Free Machinist Program paid for by $6500 federal grant
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  1. #1
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    Default Free Machinist Program paid for by $6500 federal grant

    Moderators - please let me know if I broke any rules making this post, and if so my apologies in advance.

    I am 8 weeks away from graduating with a Machinist Technology Certificate from MiraCosta College in San Diego. The entire $6500 program was paid for by a federal grant ( but there is a $350 admin fee). At the age of 55, it is the most rewarding class I have ever taken (I've taken well over 100 college classes - dual degrees). I'm being taught how to use a manual milling machine, lathe and surface grinder. In addition I am being taught how to run and set up a CNC lathe and mill (both Haas machines), program in Fusion 360, design my own blue prints (and read others), use every type of measuring equipment, index a vise and countless other things. I also earned my OSHA 10 Certificate as part of the program. Our final project is building our own high precision grinding vise. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for 16 lucky students. The class is taught by two excellent, seasond machinist professors. It consists of almost 500 hours of in-class time, plus homework. It runs 4 days a week, from 3pm to 9:30pm. Almost 5 months in total. I am going to graduate very well prepared for a brand new career and I'm super excited! I want to state I have no association with MiraCosta College other than I am an extremely satisfied student. MiraCosta College is part of the California junior college system and the class is being offered in Carlsbad (San Diego). Here is a link to the program: The Technology Career Institute at MiraCosta College - Advanced Manufacturing Courses - Machinist Technology. You must apply for the program - they are not just going to take anyone. You will be tested and interviewed before being excepted. Please don't waste a spot in this class unless you are 1000% committed to graduating - after all they only excepting 16 students. I can be reached at [email protected] if you have any question about my personal experience with this class, of which I have nothing but excellent things to say.

    The industry desperately needs the highly trained employees this school is turning out.

    Thank you!
    Regis

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mad Dad View Post
    Moderators - please let me know if I broke any rules making this post, and if so my apologies in advance.

    I am 8 weeks away from graduating with a Machinist Technology Certificate from MiraCosta College in San Diego. The entire $6500 program was paid for by a federal grant ( but there is a $350 admin fee). At the age of 55, it is the most rewarding class I have ever taken (I've taken well over 100 college classes - dual degrees). I'm being taught how to use a manual milling machine, lathe and surface grinder. In addition I am being taught how to run and set up a CNC lathe and mill (both Haas machines), program in Fusion 360, design my own blue prints (and read others), use every type of measuring equipment, index a vise and countless other things. I also earned my OSHA 10 Certificate as part of the program. Our final project is building our own high precision grinding vise. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for 16 lucky students. The class is taught by two excellent, seasond machinist professors. It consists of almost 500 hours of in-class time, plus homework. It runs 4 days a week, from 3pm to 9:30pm. Almost 5 months in total. I am going to graduate very well prepared for a brand new career and I'm super excited! I want to state I have no association with MiraCosta College other than I am an extremely satisfied student. MiraCosta College is part of the California junior college system and the class is being offered in Carlsbad (San Diego). Here is a link to the program: The Technology Career Institute at MiraCosta College - Advanced Manufacturing Courses - Machinist Technology. You must apply for the program - they are not just going to take anyone. You will be tested and interviewed before being excepted. Please don't waste a spot in this class unless you are 1000% committed to graduating - after all they only excepting 16 students. I can be reached at [email protected] if you have any question about my personal experience with this class, of which I have nothing but excellent things to say.

    The industry desperately needs the highly trained employees this school is turning out.

    Thank you!
    Regis
    You will be better able to evaluate the program after you are employed in the industry for a year or so.

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  5. #3
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    Hell I would have learned you that at 1/2 the price...Phil...hi hi

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    While I applaud your continued education I think you will find employers having difficulty bringing on someone with a cert from a class that was only 500 hours. That works out to be two months of full time study that would have been better off served as an on the job training position. If someone came in with a sheep skin with that many hours it would automatically be a "No" in my place. The reason I say no is because fresh graduates from low hours training courses do not realize what they DON'T know. This can be bad if they try to take on difficult task and work themselves into a corner.

    A typical Machine Shop class on the east coast is usually 1,800-2,200 hours (it's project based). In my hometown we have Tennessee College of Applied Technologies witch is a state funded school and very modern. I went there in 89-91 and even then It was all new Okuma CNC, Okamoto Grinders, Mitsubishi wire/sinker EDM, Mazak manual lathes, Bridgeport American manual mills, H,E,&,M saws, as well as a host of old school support equipment in a 5000sf classroom.

    These schools actually give out a NIMS certified degree, and that carries a lot of weight. When I went the class was about $3 grand and was spread out over (3) six month semesters. I just looked and it's now just over $7k and also has the federal grant money available so the money isn't an issue. Most NIMS accredited schools have employers lined up fighting for the graduates. In fact, they have employers that will pay for your schooling up front for you if you don't qualify for the grant. Just give them a one or two year contract after you graduate. Heck, most of them will co-op you out before you finish.

    I really do commend your effort in pursuing a very rewarding trade but that $6,500 was borderline extorsion IMO. Did that cover the $1,000 NIMS certification fee, or is the certification NIMS accredited?

    That would be a lot of work to cram into two months.
    https://www.nims-skills.org/sites/de...%20Toolkit.pdf

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    Meanwhile, wheelieking can't even get anyone to show up consistently to push buttons and load parts, while others notice that driving a lawnmower brings in more than guys with two-year certificates using five different types of precision machine tools.

    Just possibly there is something wrong with society these days ...

    @ Mad Dad, don't let them discourage you too much, sounds like a decent start. Plenty to learn about cutting metal but ya gotta start somewhere, and your program sounds reasonable.

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    Just possibly there is something wrong with society these days ...
    I'll second that...

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    It's going to be all about performance. You will still be starting on the bottom rung most likely. Now the question is, will you be able to perform better than someone with 0 experience. I'll give you this advise, forget you have some experience when you get hired, but use your experience when needed. Basically you are still in school, and technically it should be that way until you retire. Never stop learning.

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    What @plastikdreams said. We used to hire about half of our new machinists out of a local trade school program. Some of them were the best hires we made, some of them lacked the ability to do consistent work. Everyone had the same "qualifications" on paper. The good ones figured out what to apply from what they learned that fit out parts and processes. The clueless ones didn't hang around long.

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    @ Gcoder -

    NIMS here doesn't mean squat IMO. Hell, I have my tool & die certificate from the US department of labor (8000 hours on job 'training' and 4 years of night classes with homework to boot!), a Mastercam class cert, neither has got me a job. Most employers don't even ask to see them in the last 20 years or so of different jobs...

    But good for OP that he did something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1974 View Post
    @ Gcoder -

    NIMS here doesn't mean squat IMO. Hell, I have my tool & die certificate from the US department of labor (8000 hours on job 'training' and 4 years of night classes with homework to boot!), a Mastercam class cert, neither has got me a job. Most employers don't even ask to see them in the last 20 years or so of different jobs...

    But good for OP that he did something.
    I have better than a half dozen certs hanging on my office wall. You're right I'm not sure that the piece of paper itself ever got me anything but I learned enough that I pass the eye test when people talk to me. However, I've worked with plenty of people that have gone through the same programs that aren't capable of performing the simplest tasks without having their hand held. I think its about impossible to fail most of that stuff with an honest effort so the cert doesn't mean you retained a damn thing.

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    NIMS here doesn't mean squat IMO. Hell, I have my tool & die certificate from the US department of labor (8000 hours on job 'training' and 4 years of night classes with homework to boot!), a Mastercam class cert, neither has got me a job. Most employers don't even ask to see them in the last 20 years or so of different jobs...
    NIMS in east Tennessee is quite a big deal because the trade schools touted it to all the big factories that surround the schools. Most of the HR departments in those places are told to look for certain certs and that's all some teenager doing the hiring knows what to look for. Places like Boeing in SC require it since they are non union and have no apprenticeship programs there. Then many of other big places like Alcoa Aluminum, Olin Chemical, Dupont, Volkswagen, Thomas and Betts, Denso, etc give priority to the fresh students.


    Your right about certs not needed for a job. I've tried to always be my own HR and just look at experience. I'll take a guy with 10 years experience and a GED over a 2 year degree with no experience anyday. The only time one of my degrees or certs served me is when I started contracting in China. It wasn't that any my employers wanted to see my degrees it was the Chinese government requiring them for a work visa.

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    The trade school I went to in high school had us get a NIMS cert as part of the curriculum. No employer I've ever talked to has even heard of it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by g-coder05 View Post
    The only time one of my degrees or certs served me is when I started contracting in China. It wasn't that any my employers wanted to see my degrees it was the Chinese government requiring them for a work visa.
    If you were a local, the certs decide your life. HR here is even dumber and lazier than in the US. That piece of paper decides everything.

    In fact, if you play with the big mnc's, same thing even as a foreigner. It ain't 2006 no more.

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    I'll let you know how it goes.

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    Thank you for the kind words and encouragement. I am super excited, regardless of any negatives I hear! I know 500 hours of training is way better than none :-)

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    No offense Mad Dad, but I would be rather hesitant to hire a guy at your age with no experience. By the time you learned enough to be qualified as experienced, you would likely be beyond retirement age. And with the amount of education you have under your belt, I would tend to believe you are better suited to academics than applications.
    However, take this with a grain of salt. As it may be that you do have some talent and ability and there could be that niche job out there waiting for you.

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    Man this thread is kind if discouraging to me.

    Back story. Iam 42 and getting ready to retire from the military next year. I was planning on using my GI Bill to go to a local tech school to learn CNC, milling etc. I do some metal fab and motorcycle builds and really love working with metal. So I want to do it full time when I retire. But want to get CNC training, lathe etc. I figured it would be better to show up for a job with some education under my belt but now I am not so sure.

    I figured what shop would hire a guy like me with zero experience in this type of work... If they gave me a shot they would see iam very dedicated and love to learn. But knowing how real life is experience is always better and gets the job then no experience..

    So where does a guy do/go to get a foot in the door?

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    Shops will hire anyone with a pulse, if you show some interest and initiative you will have no problem getting your foot in the door and climbing the ladder.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ndfan6464 View Post
    Man this thread is kind if discouraging to me.

    Back story. Iam 42 and getting ready to retire from the military next year. I was planning on using my GI Bill to go to a local tech school to learn CNC, milling etc. I do some metal fab and motorcycle builds and really love working with metal. So I want to do it full time when I retire. But want to get CNC training, lathe etc. I figured it would be better to show up for a job with some education under my belt but now I am not so sure.

    I figured what shop would hire a guy like me with zero experience in this type of work... If they gave me a shot they would see iam very dedicated and love to learn. But knowing how real life is experience is always better and gets the job then no experience..

    So where does a guy do/go to get a foot in the door?
    If you move to northern Indiana, come see me.


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