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Career and Education Opportunities for Power Plant Operators in Carrollton, Texas

If you want to be a power plant operator, the Carrollton, Texas area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 1,800 people are currently employed as power plant operators in Texas. By 2016, this is expected to grow 14% to about 2,050 people employed. This is better than the national trend for power plant operators, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 1.6% over the next eight years. In general, power plant operators control, operate, or maintain machinery to generate electric power.

The income of a power plant operator is about $27 per hour or $57,580 annually on average in Texas. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $28 hourly or $58,470 annually on average. Incomes for power plant operators are better than in the overall category of Power Plant in Texas, and better than the overall Power Plant category nationally.

There are ninety-five schools of higher education in the Carrollton area, including one within twenty-five miles of Carrollton where you can get a degree to start your career as a power plant operator. Given that the most common education level for power plant operators is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, it will take about two years to learn to be a power plant operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Power Plant Operator

Power Plant Operator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, power plant operators control, operate, or maintain machinery to generate electric power. They also includes auxiliary equipment operators.

Power plant operators monitor and inspect power plant equipment and indicators to uncover evidence of operating problems. They also take readings from charts, meters and gauges at established intervals, and take corrective steps as needed. Equally important, power plant operators have to control and maintain auxiliary equipment, such as pumps and chlorinators, to supply water and auxiliary power. They are often called upon to open and close valves and switches in sequence upon signals from other staff, so as to start or shut down auxiliary units. They are expected to record and compile operational data, completing and maintaining forms, logs, and reports. Finally, power plant operators start or stop generators, auxiliary pumping equipment and other power plant equipment, and connect or disconnect equipment from circuits.

Every day, power plant operators are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for power plant operators to operate or control power generating equipment and reactors, using control boards or semi-automatic equipment. They are often called upon to clean and maintain equipment such as generators and compressors so as to avoid equipment failure or deterioration. They also communicate with systems operators to regulate and direct transmission loads and frequencies, and line voltages. They are sometimes expected to collect oil and electrolyte samples for laboratory analysis. Somewhat less frequently, power plant operators are also expected to receive outage calls and call in needed personnel during power outages and emergencies.

Power plant operators sometimes are asked to make adjustments or minor repairs. And finally, they sometimes have to take readings from charts, meters and gauges at established intervals, and take corrective steps as needed.

Like many other jobs, power plant operators must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Carrollton include:

  • Gas Plant Operator. Distribute or process gas for utility companies and others by controlling compressors to maintain specified pressures on main pipelines.
  • Petroleum Refinery Worker. Control the operation of petroleum refining or processing units. May specialize in controlling manifold and pumping systems, gauging or testing oil in storage tanks, or regulating the flow of oil into pipelines.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Power Plant Operator Training

Lincoln College of Technology - Grand Prairie, TX

Lincoln College of Technology, 2915 Alouette Drive, Grand Prairie, TX 75052. Lincoln College of Technology is a small college located in Grand Prairie, Texas. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 1,223 students. Lincoln College of Technology has a one to two year program in Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians, Other Specialties.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Carrollton, Texas

Carrollton, Texas
Carrollton, Texas photo by Drumguy8800

Carrollton is situated in Dallas County, Texas. It has a population of over 125,595, which has grown by 14.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Carrollton, 90, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Carrollton are valued at $265,200 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, one hundred sixty-seven new homes were constructed in Carrollton, down from one hundred ninety-nine the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Carrollton are educational services, finance and insurance, and health care. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 27 minutes. More than 37.0% of Carrollton residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.6%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Carrollton is 7.7%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.

The percentage of Carrollton residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 55.1%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Primera Iglesia Bautista Hispana Church, Redeemer Covenant Church and Christian Life Assembly of God Church are all churches located in Carrollton. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Carrollton is home to the Elm Fork Filtration Plant and the A W Perry Homestead Museum as well as Thomas Park and Hebron High School Baseball Field.