NORMAN — An individual might be the best engineering technician in the state, but if he or she can’t show up to work on time or doesn’t know how to communicate with co-workers, what value are they really bringing to the workplace? MNTC engineering technician students are learning the answer to that question is to never have your boss put forth such a question. The new MNTC program incorporates Smart Work Ethics to help students make the best possible impression on employers and give students an edge.
“It really was a no-brainer to include them,” Rafael Tirado, MNTC adult program supervisor, said.
After a Sept. 2012 meeting with aerospace industry representatives from the Federal Administration, Tinker Air Force Base and The Boeing Company and many more, MNTC decided such a program would be great for the Oklahoma career tech school, Tirado said.
MNTC’s new engineering technician program allows students to learn in a blended environment with online courses, small group activities, and hands-on lab activities. Students develop knowledge in a wide variety of areas including: computer application, quality assurance, six sigma, shop essentials, print reading, Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing (GD&T), computer aided design, machining, basic electronics, mechanical and electrical principles, fundamentals of technical writing and employment readiness skills.
Engineering technician program student, Jared Hughes said with more than half the program behind him, he thought the variety of classes including Smart Work Ethics would make him well-equipped to enter the workforce.
“The Smart Work Ethics curriculum presented issues a lot of employers have with their employees that applicants aren’t aware of,” Hughes said. “We really have the opportunity to get ahead of the competition.”
Smart Work Ethics course sessions are sponsored by the Central Oklahoma Workforce Investment Board (COWIB).
COWIB is a nonprofit organization incorporated under the laws of the Governor’s Council for Economic and Workforce Development and recognized by the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, the State Workforce Investment Board and the Governor as the proper body to carry out the purposes and functions of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.
Besides Smart Work Ethics and hands-on learning, students have the opportunity to gain SolidWorks Associate certification as well as network with professors and interact with influential guest speakers. Hughes said a visit from Senator Rob Standrigde (District 15) made an impact on him.
“Knowing he’s a great businessman and entrepreneur himself gave the class reassurance that employers are looking for us,” Hughes said.
Additionally, the classes are small, with up to 16 students accepted into the program, and this gives them an intimate feel, Chaundra Sierra, engineering technician program student, said.
“As such a small group, we lean on each other. We help each other,” Sierra said.
To be accepted in the engineering technician program, students must have a high school diploma or GED and meet certain math, computer science and reading requirements. The next program will begin Tues., Oct. 22. For more information about the program, go onlline and visit mntechnology.com/classes
/short-term-classes/engineering-technician or call 364-5762, ext. 7260.
Sierra said the biggest challenge of the program was that it was very time consuming, but all the hours were worth it.
“I have no doubt everyone in my class will get a job in the field,” Sierra said.