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Manufacturing Technology

What Will I Learn?

The Manufacturing Technology program provides training in a variety of skill areas within the manufacturing industry.

What Is The Occupational Outlook?

As a graduate of Heartland Community College's two-year Associate in Applied Science degree program you will be able to gain employment in a variety of settings that incorporate manufacturing technology. Employers interested in our graduates include manufacturers who hire machinists, planners, tool designers, and quality control technicians. The Occupational Wage Survey for Illinois indicates that average salaries for manufacturing personnel range from $29,500-$38,500/year.1 Depending on education and industry. Salary levels tend to vary by regions in the state.

What Are My Options?

The Associate in Applied Science Degree in Manufacturing Technology prepares the student for a variety of entry-level positions requiring a background in manufacturing processes, machining, tooling and CAD. Examples include Manufacturing Technician, Machinist, Tool Designer, Production Planner, and Quality Technician. Students initially take introductory courses in processes, CAD and Electricity. Students will then select an emphasis from one of three options: Machining, Tool Design, and Planning & Quality. Manufacturing technologists assist industrial and manufacturing engineers with problems involving efficient use of personnel, materials, and machines to produce goods. They prepare layouts of machinery and equipment, prepare charts, graphs and diagrams to illustrate workflow, develop and maintain quality control systems, program machines, design production tooling and improve processes. Technologists also perform studies and analyze production costs. You'll learn how products are manufactured based on processes used in industry. In addition, students will learn how support functions are implemented including, production planning, CNC programming, and quality control. Students will also take related courses such as CAD, Machine Tool and Materials Planning.

Graduates of the Manufacturing Technology program will have a variety of options available to them. Many students seek immediate employment upon graduation while others continue their education as a full-time student in a bachelor’s degree program. BS degree options include programs such as Industrial Technology, Manufacturing Technology, and Applied Management. Some bachelor's degree programs are available in an on-line format and also as a 3+1 arrangement.

The Machine Operations Skills certificate will prepare individuals for occupations in machining and related positions such as CNC operator, machine operator and apprentice. Students may apply this certificate for further study in manufacturing, CAD or maintenance technology.

The Machine Tool Technology certificate is a one-year program designed to prepare graduates for employment or advancement in the machine tool trade areas. This program includes introductions to blueprint reading, microcad, machine tool, CNC manufacturing, tool-making, ferrous metallurgy, welding, technical writing and basic computer skills. Students choosing to continue their education after the Machine Tool Technology certificate may easily continue in to the Manufacturing Technology Associate in Applied Science Degree.

The Manufacturing Essentials certificate prepares individuals for entry level employment in a variety of industrial settings. Students will be prepared for positions such as machine operator, assembler and production operator. Students may apply this certificate towards further study in manufacturing, CAD or maintenance technology.

The Quality Technology certificate is a one-year program designed to prepare graduates for employment of advancement in industrial and manufacturing organizations in areas dealing with process and product quality. The program includes introductions to computers, blueprint reading, metrology, manufacturing processes, statistics and quality control, statistical process control, materials science and production and operations management, and allows students to select an elective course, Students choosing to continue their education after the Quality Technology Certificate may easily continue into the Manufacturing Technology Associate in Applied Science degree.


  1. Department of Employment Security, State of Illinois, Wage Data 2009, on the Internet at http://lmi.ides.state.il.us/PDFs/statewidewage_pub.pdf