CCC&TI says new program likely to result in job

Sep. 02, 2014 @ 02:03 AM

After being asked repeatedly whether he knew any students who are skilled as a maintenance technician, and tired of saying no, Jeff Holman decided to start a program that would let him say yes.

Which is why Holman, the the vocational and technical director of continuing education at Caldwell Community College & Technical Institute, says that the new industrial maintenance technology program has a high likelihood of leading to a job.

The program gives students 20 weeks to learn all they can about safety, mechanized equipment, programmable logic controls, hydraulics and basic wiring.

Holman said businesses such as Bemis in Lenoir, Maple Springs Laundry in Hickory and Shurtape in Hudson and Stony Point have asked for technicians.

“(Bemis) stretched their search all the way out to Kentucky, trying to find a person qualified to do this kind of work,” Holman said.

Students in the program will receive several certifications, including their OSHA 10-hour industry card and forklift license.

The job requires a lot of physical and mental exertion, but the opportunities are endless, Holman said.

“It is a demanding job, both physically and mentally,” Holman said. “A lot of people are aging out of the industry. I don’t know that young people have been exposed to the opportunities in this field and the kind of money you can make in this field.”

Holman estimated that first-year employees make $14 to $17 an hour and can receive up to $22 an hour by the end of their first year, based on their skill set.

“What’s really cool about this program is it’s not just limited to business and industry,” he said. “You’re talking school systems. You’re talking Google. Everybody needs an industrial maintenance technician.”