(WACO, Texas) – Beginning in fall 2024, Texas State Technical College’s Industrial Systems program will combine mechanical and electrical specialties to meet industry and student needs.
Edward Chaney, the Industrial Systems program’s statewide department chair, recently gave a brief description of what the industrial systems industry entails.
“(Industrial systems) is the background in industrial manufacturing and industrial atmospheres that keeps things running, keeps equipment, maintains repairs and, when broken, even installs new equipment.”
Industrial Systems is offered at TSTC’s Abilene, East Williamson County, Fort Bend County, Marshall, North Texas and Waco campuses.
While each of those campuses offers Industrial Systems, each currently specializes in either mechanical or electrical industrial systems. The new change will combine the two specialties to form one cohesive program statewide.
Chaney explained that the change to the program primarily stems from industry needs.
He said, “Are they hiring the mechanics? Are they hiring the electricians? Are they hiring both? And how do you direct that and drive that as far as a statewide entity to come together as one program? So … we actually went to industry and talked to them about the skills they needed.”
Chaney said flexibility and opportunities for students also played a key role in the program changes.
“Let’s say something happens in their life, and they have to relocate,” he said. “They can continue this same award no matter which (TSTC) location they decide to continue on to, but it also gives them a stronger combined skill set versus a separate skill set.”
Jarriet Durham, lead instructor for the Industrial Systems program at TSTC’s North Texas campus, emphasized the benefit that the combined specialties will have for students.
“It just makes them better,” he said. “The more we know, the more trades that our students can be exposed to and the more hands-on that they can get, the better prepared they’ll be for the industry. So we’re looking at a more well-rounded, more prepared, more capable graduate going out into industry.”
Even though the changes to the Industrial Systems program will not take effect until the fall semester, Chaney said the program has already begun arranging dual enrollment student schedules so that the transition will be smooth.
“I’m excited to see where it’s going,” Durham said. “I’m excited to see the caliber of students that we produce because I think this is good. It’s good to streamline processes, to strengthen and beef up the training, and especially just to see the students really come in and get their money’s worth and be better prepared for what they’re getting ready to go into.”
The Industrial Systems program is part of TSTC’s Money-Back Guarantee.
The college’s commitment to participating students is simple: If they do not have a job in their
field within six months of graduation, then they will receive a full refund of their tuition.
Registration is underway for TSTC’s fall semester. For more information, go to tstc.edu.