(WACO, Texas) – Texas State Technical College in Waco is hosting several Texas A&M University College of Engineering students who are taking summer classes at TSTC.
Students are participating in the Basic Electromechanical Automation (PLC), Integrated Manufacturing Processes, Basic Machining, and Welding – Multiple Processes occupational skills achievement award programs. The students are taking classes for nine weeks as part of the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s Bachelor’s+ Program.
Edward Sanchez, an instructor in TSTC’s Welding Technology program, said he has been impressed with his students’ attitudes and work ethics.
“They are doing great,” he said. “There was no doubt they would perform well. I wish I had 20 more (students) like them.”
Rafael Maltos, of El Paso, is studying nuclear engineering and is scheduled to graduate in 2024 from Texas A&M. He chose his program of study because he has a cousin working in the nuclear industry and is interested in the defense side of nuclear work.
“A lot of it (nuclear engineering) is theoretical, but we don’t have as much applied as the other programs,” Maltos said.
Maltos said he had never touched welding equipment before coming this summer to TSTC. Through the classes, he has gained a new appreciation for the work that goes into welding.
After graduation, Maltos wants to work at a nuclear lab.
Orlando Martinez, of Cypress, is studying aerospace engineering and is scheduled to graduate in 2024 from Texas A&M. His inspiration for choosing his major was SpaceX.
“I’ve always loved the sky and how planes and rockets work,” Martinez said. “Being part of that frontier is really cool.”
Before coming to TSTC, Martinez’s welding skills were minimal and came from working with his uncle and taking a middle school technical class.
After graduation, Martinez wants to become a flight-testing engineer or work with propulsion systems.
“Knowing how pieces are welded together will help with structural support and the integrity of materials,” he said.
Angela Duron, of Houston, is working toward a Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Engineering Technology – Mechatronics Track and is scheduled to graduate in 2024 from Texas A&M. She grew up with an interest in robotics and liked the combination of electrical and mechanical theory and applications.
Duron said she enjoys how TSTC shows the real-life aspects of solving problems in labs.
The summer program is helping Duron branch out in topics she is interested in.
“My summer has been an absolute steppingstone,” she said.
After graduation, Duran wants to join the U.S. Air Force, go to graduate school, and ultimately tie together her interests in robotics and mechanical engineering to develop technology for space exploration.
Aaron Moy, of Austin, is working toward a Bachelor of Science in Multidisciplinary Engineering Technology – Mechatronics Track and is scheduled to graduate in 2024 from Texas A&M. He knew that he wanted to study engineering as far back as he can remember.
Moy said the summer experience could help him get into Texas A&M’s labs to secure coveted research positions and work alongside graduate students.
“I’ll be a better manager when the time comes,” he said. “I can perform better at my job.”
After graduation, Moy wants to go to graduate school and later work with robotics in the biomedical field.
“I’d love to be on the forefront of that,” he said.
The Bachelor’s+ Program fulfills the students’ ENGR(x) zero-credit-hour requirement for graduation from Texas A&M. To meet the requirement, engineering students must participate in an approved engineering-centric activity that meets the criteria of a high-impact learning experience, followed by meaningful self-reflection. This is the second summer that TSTC’s Waco campus has hosted Texas A&M students.
For more information on the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s Bachelor’s+ Program, go to tees.tamu.edu.
For more information on TSTC, go to tstc.edu.