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Career and Education Opportunities for Layout Technicians in Elgin, Illinois

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for layout technicians in the Elgin, Illinois area. There are currently 400 working layout technicians in Illinois; this should shrink by 20% to 320 working layout technicians in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for layout technicians, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 11.6% over the next eight years. Layout technicians generally lay out reference points and dimensions on metal or plastic stock or workpieces, such as sheets, plates, or machine parts, for further processing.

Layout technicians earn about $18 hourly or $38,040 yearly on average in Illinois and about $16 hourly or $34,920 yearly on average nationally. Incomes for layout technicians are better than in the overall category of Foundry and Metal Work in Illinois, and better than the overall Foundry and Metal Work category nationally.

There are sixty-one schools of higher education in the Elgin area, including three within twenty-five miles of Elgin where you can get a degree to start your career as a layout technician. Layout technicians usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a layout technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Layout Technician

In general, layout technicians lay out reference points and dimensions on metal or plastic stock or workpieces, such as sheets, plates, or machine parts, for further processing. They also includes shipfitters.

Layout technicians fit and align fabricated components to be welded or assembled. They also lift and position workpieces in relation to surface plates, manually or with hoists. Equally important, layout technicians have to lay out and fabricate metal structural components such as plates and frames. Finally, layout technicians mark curves and welding symbols onto workpieces, using scribes, soapstones, punches, and hand drills.

Every day, layout technicians are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they visualize how things come together and can be organized.

It is important for layout technicians to locate center lines and verify template positions, using measuring instruments such as gauge blocks and dial indicators. They are often called upon to compute layout dimensions, and decide on and mark reference points on metal stock or workpieces for further processing, such as welding and assembly. They also formulate and develop layouts from blueprints and templates, applying knowledge of trigonometry, layout, effects of heat, and properties of metals. They are sometimes expected to formulate locations and sequences of cutting and welding operations, using compasses and rules. Somewhat less frequently, layout technicians are also expected to add dimensional details to blueprints or drawings made by other staff.

Layout technicians sometimes are asked to add dimensional details to blueprints or drawings made by other staff. And finally, they sometimes have to formulate and develop layouts from blueprints and templates, applying knowledge of trigonometry, layout, effects of heat, and properties of metals.

Like many other jobs, layout technicians must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Elgin include:

  • Aircraft Parts Assembler. Assemble, fit, and install parts of airplanes, space vehicles, or missiles, such as tails, wings, fuselage, bulkheads, stabilizers, landing gear, rigging and control equipment, or heating and ventilating systems.
  • Buffing Machine Operator. Set up, operate, or tend grinding and related tools that remove excess material or burrs from surfaces, sharpen edges or corners, or buff, hone, or polish metal or plastic work pieces.
  • Heat Treating Equipment Operator. Set up, operate, or tend heating equipment, such as heat-treating furnaces, flame-hardening machines, induction machines, or vacuum equipment to temper, harden, or heat-treat metal or plastic objects.
  • Mold Machine Operator. Set up, operate, or tend metal or plastic molding, casting, or coremaking machines to mold or cast metal or thermoplastic parts or products.
  • Solderer. Braze or solder together components to assemble fabricated metal parts, using soldering iron, torch, or welding machine and flux.
  • Tool and Die Maker. Analyze specifications, lay out metal stock, set up and operate machine tools, and fit and assemble parts to make and repair dies, cutting tools, and machinists' hand tools.
  • Welder. Use hand-welding or flame-cutting equipment to weld or join metal components or to fill holes, indentations, or seams of fabricated metal products.
  • Welding Operator. Set up, operate, or tend welding, soldering, or brazing machines or robots that weld, braze, or heat treat metal products, components, or assemblies.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Layout Technician Training

Elgin Community College - Elgin, IL

Elgin Community College, 1700 Spartan Drive, Elgin, IL 60123-7193. Elgin Community College is a medium sized college located in Elgin, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,821 students. Elgin Community College has a one to two year program in Machine Tool Technology/Machinist which graduated two students in 2008.

College of Lake County - Grayslake, IL

College of Lake County, 19351 W Washington St., Grayslake, IL 60030-1198. College of Lake County is a large college located in Grayslake, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 16,359 students. College of Lake County has a less than one year program in Machine Tool Technology/Machinist which graduated two students in 2008.

Oakton Community College - Des Plaines, IL

Oakton Community College, 1600 E Golf Rd., Des Plaines, IL 60016-1268. Oakton Community College is a large college located in Des Plaines, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,552 students. Oakton Community College has an associate's degree program in Machine Tool Technology/Machinist which graduated two students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Elgin, Illinois

Elgin, Illinois
Elgin, Illinois photo by James Jordan

Elgin is located in Kane County, Illinois. It has a population of over 106,330, which has grown by 12.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Elgin, 104, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Elgin cost $156,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred thirty-two new homes were constructed in Elgin, down from seven hundred fifty-six the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Elgin are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, metal and metal products, and administrative and support and waste management services. The average travel time to work is about 26 minutes. More than 20.5% of Elgin residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Elgin is 12.4%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Elgin residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 56.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Seventh Day Adventist Church and Saint Thomas More Roman Catholic Church are some of the churches located in Elgin. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Elgin is home to the Fox Bluff Corporate Center and the Elgin Fire Station Number 2 as well as Wing Park and College Park. Shopping malls in the area include Wing Park Manor Shopping Center, Tyler Creek Plaza Shopping Center and Town and Country Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Elgin can choose from Elgin-Days Inn, Colonial Lodge Motel and Crowne Plaza for temporary stays in the area.