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Career and Education Opportunities for Printing Press Machine Operators in New York, New York

Printing press machine operator career and educational opportunities abound in New York, New York. Currently, 13,130 people work as printing press machine operators in New York. This is expected to shrink by 12% to about 11,580 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for printing press machine operators, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 5.5% over the next eight years. In general, printing press machine operators set up or operate various types of printing machines, such as offset, letterset, or gravure presses or screen printers to produce print on paper or other materials.

The income of a printing press machine operator is about $16 per hour or $33,840 annually on average in New York. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $15 per hour or $32,170 annually on average. Compared with people working in the overall category of Book Binding and Printing, people working as printing press machine operators in New York earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Book Binding and Printing nationally.

The New York area is home to 335 schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of New York where you can get a degree as a printing press machine operator. Given that the most common education level for printing press machine operators is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a printing press machine operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Printing Press Machine Operator

Printing Press Machine Operator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, printing press machine operators set up or operate various types of printing machines, such as offset, letterset, or gravure presses or screen printers to produce print on paper or other materials.

Printing press machine operators push buttons, turn handles or move controls and levers to start and control printing machines. They also reposition printing plates, adjust pressure rolls, or otherwise adjust machines to further optimize print quality, using knobs, handwheels, or hand tools. Equally important, printing press machine operators have to set and adjust speed, temperature and positions and pressure tolerances of equipment. They are often called upon to clean and lubricate printing machines and components, using oil, solvents, brushes, rags, and hoses. They are expected to decide on and install printing plates and cylinders in machines according to given requirements, using hand tools. Finally, printing press machine operators pour or spread paint, ink and other materials into reservoirs or color holders of printing units, making measurements and adjustments to control color and viscosity.

Every day, printing press machine operators are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for printing press machine operators to blend and test paint, inks and solvents in line with types of material being printed and work order specifications. They are often called upon to remove printed materials from presses, using handtrucks, electric lifts, or hoists, and transport them to drying, storage or finishing areas. They also inspect and examine printed products for print clarity, color accuracy, conformance to given requirements, and external defects. They are sometimes expected to monitor stocks of materials such as paper and metal to maintain supplies during equipment operation. Somewhat less frequently, printing press machine operators are also expected to monitor feeding and racking processes of presses to maintain specified operating levels and to uncover malfunctions, making adjustments as needed.

Printing press machine operators sometimes are asked to pack and label cartons, boxes, or bins of finished products. They also have to be able to ready and treat lithographic plates with various chemicals to wash and preserve plates and fix images and attach cloth to take-up rollers, placing it in feeding position and threading it through equipment as needed. And finally, they sometimes have to reposition printing plates, adjust pressure rolls, or otherwise adjust machines to further optimize print quality, using knobs, handwheels, or hand tools.

Like many other jobs, printing press machine operators must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in New York include:

  • Bindery Worker. Set up or operate binding machines that produce books and other printed materials.
  • Decorative Painter. Paint, coat, or decorate articles, such as furniture, glass, or leather.
  • Dental Laboratory Technician. Construct and repair full or partial dentures or dental appliances.
  • Engraver. Engrave or etch metal, wood, or other materials for identification or decorative purposes. Includes such workers as etcher-circuit processors, pantograph engravers, and silk screen etchers.
  • Photographic Processing Machine Operator. Operate photographic processing machines, such as photographic printing machines, film developing machines, and mounting presses.
  • Prepress Technician. Set up and prepare material for printing presses.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Printing Press Machine Operator Training

Middlesex County College - Edison, NJ

Middlesex County College, 2600 Woodbridge Avenue, Edison, NJ 08818-3050. Middlesex County College is a large college located in Edison, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,346 students. Middlesex County College has an associate's degree program in Graphic Communications, Other Specialties which graduated twenty-six students in 2008.

Kean University - Union, NJ

Kean University, 1000 Morris Ave, Union, NJ 07083-0411. Kean University is a large university located in Union, New Jersey. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 14,203 students and an admission rate of 67%. Kean University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Printing Management which graduated twenty and eighteen students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Basic Flexographer (Level 1): The "Basic Flexographer" classification (Level I) has been developed to provide recognition of those who have rudimentary knowledge of the industry or are entry level personnel.

For more information, see the Flexographic Technical Association website.

National Certification for Flexographic Press Operators: Endorsed and funded by the Foundation of Flexographic Technical Association (FFTA), the Flexographic Press Skill Standards and Flexographic Press Operator's Multi-Color Certification Examination were designed and developed by the National Council for Skill Standards in Graphic Communications (NC).

For more information, see the The National Council for Skill Standards in Graphic Communications website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: New York, New York

New York, New York
New York, New York photo by UpstateNYer

New York is situated in New York County, New York. It has a population of over 8,363,710, which has grown by 4.4% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in New York, 177, is far greater than the national average.

The three big industries for women in New York are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 40 minutes. More than 27.4% of New York residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 11.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in New York is 10.3%, which is greater than New York's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of New York residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 70.0%, is more than both the national and state average. Saint Lukes Roman Catholic Church, Saint Ann's Episcopal Church and Trinity Church are some of the churches located in New York. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the American Baptist Churches in the USA.

New York is home to the Cadman Plaza and the Flushing Station as well as Victory Field and Whitman Park. Visitors to New York can choose from Boland Corporate Housing, Club Quarters Inc - Reservations and Allied Hotel Marketing Limited for temporary stays in the area.