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Explore Engineering and Industrial Technology at Aims Community College on October 18

Those looking to kickstart a career in engineering or industrial technology are invited to an open house at Aims Community College on October 18 from 5-7 p.m.

Instructor showing people through industrial technology lab

It’s an evening to discover the high-tech facilities and equipment at the Applied Technology and Trades Center, 5015 W. 20th St. on the Greeley Campus. The event is also an opportunity to learn more about how Aims associate degree programs can transfer into engineering bachelor degree programs from across the region. 

The open house is a hands-on experience. “We will be featuring a lot of the equipment our students learn on. Current students will help showcase these plug-and-play opportunities for learning,” said Program Coordinator of Agriculture & Technology Megan Blaser. Giveaways and snacks will also be provided. 

“This is a great way to connect with the community,” said David Sordi, Sustained Industrial Technology and Energy instructor. “It shows what Aims offers and the benefits, like low-cost tuition, instructors with a lot of experience and excellent facilities.” 

Engineering Science Degree Program and Transfers

The open house also showcases the newly launched Associate of Engineering Science degree that transfers to the Colorado School of Mines. Representatives from that university will be at the open house to answer questions about the formalized pathway for student transfer. Aims also invited people from other colleges with engineering bachelor's degree programs to answer questions about their programs and the transferability from Aims.

Most engineering job listings require at least a four-year degree or higher. This is why Aims developed the articulation agreement with the Colorado School of Mines. Aims conducted a 2022 degree feasibility study that forecasted a higher-than-average occupational demand for engineers within Weld County. While Weld's median salary is slightly below the national average, median earnings for engineers in 2021 was $94,511.

Preparing for High-Paying Jobs

“People who might be thinking of pursuing work in manufacturing or other industries can come here and get a degree that will help them get better jobs,” Sordi said. “Because of innovation and robotics, industry is really booming here.” 

Nearly 6,000 manufacturers across Colorado are looking for employees to fill jobs in business sectors such as electronics, energy, aerospace, biomedical, food and beverage, and more. According to the State of Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, advanced manufacturing in Colorado generated $24 billion in output, 6.2 percent of the state GDP in 2019.

Sordi believes that there are misconceptions about careers in manufacturing and is working to change that. “Back in the eighties and nineties, when industry was leaving the country, it wasn't considered a viable career. We're battling that cultural bias, but it is a valuable and lucrative career path for students.”

Blaser also sees this perception as a challenge and also an opportunity.  “We need people who understand electronics, automation and the robotics of things, because it's not people working on the assembly line anymore. It’s a much more skilled position.” This area of study also opens doors in other fields as well.  “Every industry is becoming more and more automated. So you can work in health care, you can work in aerospace, you can work in agriculture, you can work in traditional manufacturing,” Blaser said. “We have a few students now who are seeing the benefit and getting dual degrees in another industry because they see the value it can bring.” 

Aims offers an Associate Degree in Industrial Technology and certificates that cover critical aspects of working in manufacturing:

  • Basic Automation and Maintenance
  • Advanced Automation
  • Advanced Maintenance
  • Energy
  • Manufacturing Operations
  • Robotics

For more information about this or other Aims Community College events, please visit events.aims.edu.