Maintenance Mechanics Technology Frequently Asked Questions

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Big Bend Community College Maintenance Mechanics Technology

How do I get started?

First step in getting started is to speak to a career counselor or program advisor. Each will be able to advise you of your options and guide you through the process.

What about financial aid? Who do I see?

You may visit our financial aid office conveniently located in the main administrative building (1400 Bldg.) Financial and career counselors will guide you through the process and help you make the right the decisions for you. You may call 509-793-2061 or click on this link Financial Aid to visit the Financial Aid Home Page.

Are there pre-entrance exams or pre-qualifications required for this program?

The answer is yes and no! Math and English placement tests are required of students wishing to take Math or English courses. These tests aid us in placing you in the right level course best suited for your ability. There are no other pre-entrance exams or requirements.

I have taken miscellaneous classes at one time. Do they still count?

Generally, as much as previous courses apply and can be documented… yes. You should always check with your councilor or advisor for the final determination as to how previous course work applies to present course work.

Are there expensive tools I am required to purchase?

The IST programs do not require you to purchase any minimum tool sets. The programs generally will provide everything you need for your course work. We ask that students provide their own safety glasses if they need or want special types. ** Students enrolled in Welding courses are required to purchase minimal tools.

Is this degree transferable to a four year college?

At this time AAS degrees are not transferable to most four year institutions. These degrees are designed to certify technical course work (job skills). “Four year” degrees are generally suited to academic type studies.

How many credits do I need for an AAS degree? A certificate of Achievement?

Ninety-one credit/hours is the minimum required for an AAS degree. However each professional/technical program has “program required courses” that must be completed. IST ~Maintenance Mechanics requires 106 credit/hours in its entirety. Certificates of Achievement Require 45 plus credit/hours with successful completion of the written, oral communications, human relations, a mathematic, general education requirements and certain program courses

Does Military training count?

College credit for military training is a possibility. You may contact the registrar’s office for information on how to pursue credit. You may also contact the program advisor for added details. Program advisors generally must look at military credits on a case by case basis to judge if program requirements were satisfied by military training.

What is the job outlook?

The latest reports from the Dept of Labor indicate that Nationwide, Maintenance Mechanics (technicians) will enjoy a very favorable employment market. Many working Maintenance mechanics will be retiring in the next five to ten years leaving a lot of opportunities, with few, qualified younger workers available to back fill the open positions. Locally, we see near constant advertising for Maintenance related openings. We see many employment opportunities annually.

What is the earning power for Maintenance Mechanics?

Many qualified Maintenance technicians with a few years experience, make salaries that rival or exceed salaries earned by individuals with 4 year degrees. Maintenance personnel usually have high job security also.

What will my degree qualify me for?

The IST degree program is designed the individual that wishes entry level in a maintenance department. The degree certifies that the holder has successfully completed the program. It tells the employer that the graduate has put a great deal of effort into their career choice, is motivated, interested, is trainable, and most importantly is worthy of their future investment.

How about class availability?

Generally, most IST classes are scheduled Monday through Thursday from 9am to 3:30 pm. There are exceptions. We do offer some classes in the evenings. We try to be as flexible with scheduling as possible. Contact the program advisors or career counselors for the best source of information about overall class schedules.

I can’t afford school. How do I justify this?

You can’t afford not too! Fitting school into anyone’s life, generally means certain life style changes. Studies prove over and over that individuals who pursue higher education have significantly higher earning power over their lifetime. Many financial aid programs exist that may soften the financial burden. Speak to the financial aid councilors. Explore your options…


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