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TechWORKS! Career Information Profiles

MECHANICAL TECHNOLOGY

Every day, you use products that have been made by machines. But who makes the machines? Mechanical technologists and technicians design, develop, test and manufacture machinery, industrial robotics and other equipment. As a mechanical technologist or technician, you might specialize in aeronautical technology, CAD/CAM, energy systems, fire protection, naval architecture, marine engineering, mechanical design, mechanical technology, power engineering, robotics or tool and die design. In each of these areas, you make sketches and rough layouts, record data, analyze results and write reports.

You might work independently or assist mechanical engineers in designing, drawing, developing and modifying various types of products, machines, mechanical devices, manufacturing processes and tools used in manufacturing. Or you might assist agricultural engineers in designing and developing specialized agricultural equipment, machines, structures and utilities.

Some activities you might do as a mechanical technologist are:

  • Prepare dimensional drawings and specifications for machines and components, power transmission systems, process piping, heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems
  • Prepare cost and material estimates, project schedules and reports
  • Analyze the cost efficiency of projects
  • Sketch layouts for new machines or tool designs
  • Assemble new devices
  • Conduct tests and analyses of machines, components and materials to determine their performance, strength, response to stress and other characteristics
  • Design moulds, tools, dies, jigs and fixtures for use in manufacturing process
  • Supervise, monitor and review mechanical installations and construction projects
  • Prepare standards and schedules, and supervise mechanical maintenance programs or operations of mechanical plants of processes
  • Sell and service mechanical equipment and systems
  • Supervise installation of mechanical equipment and systems

Some activities you might do as a mechanical technician are:

  • Assist in preparing engineering design, drawings and specifications
  • Carry out a range of mechanical tests and analyses of machines, components and materials
  • Assist in the design of moulds, tools, dies, jigs and fixtures for use in manufacturing process
  • Assist in inspection of mechanical installations and construction projects
  • Participate in the installation, repair and maintenance of machinery and equipment

Where Will You Work?

As a mechanical technologist or technician, you might find yourself working in factories, warehouses, power stations, mills, testing laboratories, consulting engineering companies, processing companies such as chemical and food organizations, or government agencies.

You work mostly in offices, laboratories and on plant floors. If you are working in design, you may spend time at a CADD station or drafting board. Overtime hours may be required regularly. Related occupations include safety inspector, chemist, quality assurance coordinator and draftsperson.

How Much Will You Earn?

Technologist: $70,000/yr
Technician: $72,000/yr
GradTech: $48,500/yr

How Does the Future Look?

The annual growth rate for this career is above average.

How Can You Get Started?

In high school, be sure to take courses in English, mathematics, chemistry, physics and computers.

What Will You Need?

To pursue this career you should enjoy detailed work and be well organized. You need to develop leadership skills as well as a results-oriented attitude. You must have good communication skills and be able to apply scientific principles to problems in design and operation. You should enjoy doing precise work with tools, equipment and instruments.

Post Secondary Possibilities

College
Program
Accredited Status
Discipline
BCIT
Mechanical - CAD/CAM
Technologist
Mechanical
BCIT Mechanical - Manufacturing Technologist Mechanical
BCIT Mechanical - Systems Technologist Mechanical
BCIT Mechanical - Mechanical Design Technologist Mechanical
BCIT Plastics Technologist Mechanical
Camosun College Mechanical Engineering Technologist (CTAB) Mechanical
Camosun College Mechanical Engineering Technician (CTAB) Mechanical
Okanagan University College Mechanical Engineering Technologist Mechanical
The University College of the Cariboo Engineering Design & Drafting Technician Civil/Mechanical

 

  • Programs listed are those accredited by the Applied Science Technologists & Technicians of British Columbia (ASTTBC); check www.asttbc.org for updates on accredited programs.
  • Check with your career facilitator or counsellor for other sources of information applicable to education options for this technology.
  • Salary figures indicated in the 'How Much Will You Earn?' section are extracted from ASTTBC's Member Compensation Survey or other Canadian sources applicable to the specific technology discipline. These figures are representative only; actual figures will vary depending on academic training, practical experience, job responsibilities and location of employment.
  • The TechWORKS! web site is an important online resource and provides links to career information that will be of interest to students pursuing a career in technology.

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