(WACO, Texas) – Graduates of Texas State Technical College’s Industrial Systems program in Waco should know that work opportunities are out there when they graduate.
“The program in Waco is designed to provide our students with a wide range of valuable skills, from basic machining to boiler maintenance and even programmable logic controllers, which are the prevalent control systems in industry today,” said Edward Chaney, TSTC’s statewide chair of the Industrial Systems department.
Jobs for electromechanical and mechatronics technologists and technicians are projected to rise to 15,100 nationally by 2029, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The agency predicted job growth will be seen in the control instruments, electromechanical, machinery, motor vehicle parts and navigational manufacturing areas.
Texas had more than 1,900 electromechanical and mechatronics technologists and technicians earning an annual mean wage of $56,750 in May 2019, according to the labor statistics bureau.
“People move around, especially when a new company comes in and expands,” said Jose Palacios, manager of business and industry initiatives for the Heart of Texas Workforce Development Board Inc. in Waco. “Several companies in the area have expanded or added shifts to their work schedules.”
Palacios said workers are needed for logistics, particularly to maintain conveyor belts and other related equipment.
Rj Garcia, a sales executive at Placements Unlimited Inc. in Waco, said the company gets many people looking for production-type work in the city.
“It all depends on what the company is looking for,” Garcia said. “We do have success filling those jobs.”
Anthony Spalding, director of interns and apprentice programs at HOLT CAT in Irving, said it can be challenging to find qualified applicants for industrial systems, welding and other heavy equipment and manufacturing fields. The heavy equipment company has several locations throughout Texas, including Waco.
“To work in this field or any other trades-related field, the individuals need to have an interest or desire to work with their hands and create, from concept to finish, a product they had a part in,” he said. “As far as inspiring interest, it is exposure to the fields and education on career opportunities and compensation.”
Palacios said utilizing the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act is a way the workforce board motivates people of all ages to pursue industrial systems jobs and other technical fields.
For more information on Texas State Technical College, go to tstc.edu.