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Career and Education Opportunities for Numerical Control Tool Programmers in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for numerical control tool programmers in the Winston-Salem, North Carolina area. The national trend for numerical control tool programmers sees this job pool shrinking by about 15.4% over the next eight years. In general, numerical control tool programmers develop programs to control machining or processing of parts by automatic machine tools, equipment, or systems.

The income of a numerical control tool programmer is about $19 hourly or $40,080 annually on average in North Carolina. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $21 hourly or $44,310 annually on average. Numerical control tool programmers earn more than people working in the category of Computer Controls generally in North Carolina and more than people in the Computer Controls category nationally.

There are four schools within twenty-five miles of Winston-Salem where you can study to be a numerical control tool programmer, among eighteen schools of higher education total in the Winston-Salem area. The most common level of education for numerical control tool programmers is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree. You can expect to spend about two years studying to be a numerical control tool programmer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Numerical Control Tool Programmer

Numerical Control Tool Programmer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, numerical control tool programmers develop programs to control machining or processing of parts by automatic machine tools, equipment, or systems.

Numerical control tool programmers analyze job orders, drawings, blueprints, specifications, printed circuit board pattern films, and layout data so as to calculate dimensions and feed rates. They also decide on the sequence of machine operations, and decide on the proper cutting tools needed to machine workpieces into the desired shapes. Equally important, numerical control tool programmers have to modify existing programs to enhance efficiency. They are often called upon to decide on reference points, machine cutting paths, or hole locations, and compute angular and linear dimensions, radii, and curvatures. They are expected to observe machines on trial runs or conduct computer simulations to insure that programs and machinery will function properly and produce items that meet specifications. Finally, numerical control tool programmers revise programs and/or tapes to remove errors, and retest programs to check that problems have been solved.

Every day, numerical control tool programmers are expected to be able to visualize how things come together and can be organized. They need to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they imediately see the relationships between collections of numbers, images, and patterns.

It is important for numerical control tool programmers to enter computer commands to store or retrieve components patterns or programs that transfer data to other media. They are often called upon to ready geometric layouts from graphic displays, using computer-assisted drafting software or drafting instruments and graph paper. They also compare encoded tapes or computer printouts with original part specifications and blueprints to confirm precision of instructions. They are sometimes expected to enter coordinates of hole locations into program memories by depressing pedals or buttons of programmers. Somewhat less frequently, numerical control tool programmers are also expected to write instruction sheets and cutter lists for a machine's controller so as to guide setup and encode numerical control tapes.

Numerical control tool programmers sometimes are asked to draw machine tool paths on pattern film, using colored markers and following guidelines for tool speed and efficiency. and revise programs and/or tapes to remove errors, and retest programs to check that problems have been solved. And finally, they sometimes have to observe machines on trial runs or conduct computer simulations to insure that programs and machinery will function properly and produce items that meet specifications.

Like many other jobs, numerical control tool programmers must be thorough and dependable and be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Numerical Control Tool Programmer Training

Davidson County Community College - Thomasville, NC

Davidson County Community College, 297 Davidson Community College Rd, Thomasville, NC 27360-7385. Davidson County Community College is a small college located in Thomasville, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,617 students. Davidson County Community College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Computer Programming/Programmer which graduated five, two, and six students respectively in 2008.

Surry Community College - Dobson, NC

Surry Community College, 630 S. Main St., Dobson, NC 27017-8432. Surry Community College is a small college located in Dobson, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,527 students. Surry Community College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Computer Programming/Programmer which graduated zero and one students respectively in 2008.

Guilford Technical Community College - Jamestown, NC

Guilford Technical Community College, 601 High Point Rd, Jamestown, NC 27282. Guilford Technical Community College is a large college located in Jamestown, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 11,289 students. Guilford Technical Community College has an associate's degree program in Computer Programming/Programmer which graduated nine students in 2008.

Winston-Salem State University - Winston-Salem, NC

Winston-Salem State University, 601 Martin Luther King Jr Dr, Winston-Salem, NC 27110-0001. Winston-Salem State University is a medium sized university located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,444 students and an admission rate of 68%. Winston-Salem State University has a postbaccalaureate certificate program in Computer Programming/Programmer.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Winston-Salem, North Carolina photo by File Upload Bot

Winston-Salem is situated in Forsyth County, North Carolina. It has a population of over 217,600, which has grown by 17.1% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Winston-Salem, 83, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Winston-Salem cost $76,600 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, 1,032 new homes were built in Winston-Salem, down from 1,706 the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Winston-Salem are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, health care, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 30.3% of Winston-Salem residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 11.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Winston-Salem is 9.0%, which is less than North Carolina's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Winston-Salem residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 50.4%, is more than both the national and state average. Wachovia Arbor Church, Mount Zion Church and Hope Church are all churches located in Winston-Salem. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Moravian Church in America.

Winston-Salem is home to the Stafford Center and the Dixie Classics Fairgrounds as well as Forest Park and Mineral Springs Park. Shopping centers in the area include College Plaza Shopping Center, College Village Shopping Center and Club Haven Shopping Center.