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Career Outlook for Individuals with a Degree in Precision Metal Working

Career News February 16, 2016

If working with mills, drill presses and lathes is something you hold dear in your heart, learn what a degree program in precision metal working could do for you in life. Also, learn the general education requirements, job outlook and the salary details for most graduates of this profession.

Career Options for those with a Degree in Precision Metal Working

Degree programs for precision metal working are offered at either an associate’s or Bachelor’s degree level. In the former, students are prepared to use machines such as drill presses, mills and lathes. The coursework revolves around topics such as mathematics, metallurgy and metal fabrication. Additionally, students are taught how to weld and sometimes they can learn how to use advanced computer programs like CAD software.

Career Machinist Tool and Die Maker
Education details Apprenticeship or an associate’s degree Apprenticeship or an associate’s degree
Estimated job growth rate 6% 6%
Average salary in 2012 $41,510 $41,510

What can I do with a Precision Metal Working Degree?

There are two major professions where graduates of a degree program in Precision metal working often get jobs; machinist and tool and die making.


They work in industries that make heavy machine objects or normal industries that have various machines. They basically set up machines used to fabricate metals in an industry, control them and assess for any malfunctioning indications. Where cutting and drilling of metal is done manually, machinists actively supervise the work and make corrections or recommendations where necessary. On the other hand, they set up programs for industries where cutting and drilling of machines is done digitally; that is setting instructions for computer numerically controlled machines to change and regulate themselves when cutting instruments. In other words, they control the speed and precision of CMCs through computer programs.

Also, machinists make adjustments necessary to resemble the blueprints provided to them by architects and engineers are achieved. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimate that in 2012, a machinist earned an average salary of $41,510 per annum, while jobs for people seeking to join the profession are likely to soar at an average rate of six percent per year up to the year 2022.

Tool and Die Maker

They are specialists in machines’ body parts such as molds, gauges and fixtures. Tool and Die makers design, create and repair the above mentioned parts of machines should anything happen to them during operation. While in training, tool and die makers are taught how to convert blueprints and CAD designs into instructions in which cutting machines can read and execute.

Their average salary according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics is similar to that of machinists, with a typical tool and die maker earning $41,510 in 2012. On the other hand, jobs for people wishing to join this profession will be at six percent in the next few years (up to 2022) as per the BLS.

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