LSC-Conroe Center Machining Technology Department
Consider training for a career in Machining Technology–one of several workforce skills awards programs offered by LSC-Conroe Center. The machining technology workforce skills award prepares graduates for careers in the operation and programming of computer numeric control (CNC) drills, grinders, mills, and lathes used extensively in the manufacturing and repair industries. With improvements in technologies, such as CNC machine tools, autoloaders, high-speed machining, and lights-out manufacturing, machinists will still be required to set up, monitor, and maintain these systems (OOH).
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What Machinists Do
After reviewing electronic or written blueprints or specifications for a job, machinists use machine tools, such as lathes, milling machines, and machining centers to produce precision metal parts. They are knowledgeable in the working properties of metals and use their skill with machine tools to plan and carry out the operations needed to make machined products that meet precise specifications. Most machinists work in machining shops or in manufacturing industries, such as machinery manufacturing, oil field equipment, and transportation equipment manufacturing (motor vehicle parts and aerospace products and parts). Maintenance machinists work in most industries that use manual and CNC production equipment. The machinist has the option to run a CNC machine, which includes a computer program to determine the manufacturing design and programming of the machine. Machinists use CNC machines to run high-tech equipment that makes tools, dies, and machine parts necessary for manufacturing.
Machining program courses provide students with needed math skills, as well as an excellent understanding of blueprint reading, geometric dimensioning and tolerancing, and precision measurement tools used in the machining industry. Advanced course offerings include advanced manufacturing, utilizing CNC equipment, and computer assisted machine protocols.
The Job Market
Machining is considered an evolving occupation and most likely to provide future employment growth and economic competitiveness in Texas. With improvements in technologies, such as CNC machine tools, autoloaders, high-speed machining, and lights-out manufacturing, machinists will still be required to set up, monitor, and maintain these systems (OOH). In addition to salary and hourly wages, many companies provide medical insurance for the employee and sometimes for their families for an additional amount. Other benefits include paid vacation, sick days, and holidays.