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Mastercam Training: Education Options and Info

Mastercam training is generally a hands-on program that teaches students how to use a tool-designing program. Continue reading for an overview of the training, as well as career and salary info for some career options for graduates.

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Mastercam is a set of software programs for computer-aided design and manufacturing, used in many careers. Training in Mastercam is available at many vocational schools, colleges and universities, and certifications are available to those who complete training and pass certification exams.

Essential Information

Mastercam is a package of computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing (CAD/CAM) software programs utilized by those in the manufacturing industry to produce tools and parts. It is the most popular software produced by CNC Software. Training programs in Mastercam may focus on one or multiple product levels and vary in length. These programs are offered at 4-year universities, technical schools and community colleges, along with private organizations. Mastercam training is helpful for a variety of careers, including those of machinists, tool and die makers, and industrial engineering technicians.

Career Machinists Tool and Die Makers Industrial Engineering Technicians
Education Requirements High school diploma; 2-year training programs and apprenticeships are available High school diploma; 2-year training programs and apprenticeships are available Associate's degree or postsecondary certificate
Other Requirements Various certifications, such as those in Mastercam, are available Various certifications, such as those in Mastercam, are available Various certifications, such as those in Mastercam, are available
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024) 10%* -13%* -5%*
Median Salary (2015) $40,550* $50,290* $53,780*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Options

Mastercam is used by many different manufacturing industry professionals, including machinists, tool and die makers, and industrial engineering technicians. Training in Mastercam is often available to students enrolled in two-year programs in universities, community colleges, and technical institutes and may focus on particular tool designs.

Machinists

Machinists utilize blueprints and tools to produce and fix metal machine parts. These tools may be operated manually or controlled by computers. Postsecondary certificate programs and apprenticeships are the most common method of entrance into this field. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that the median salary of machinists as of May 2015 was $40,550. Positions in this field are expected to grow 10% between 2014 and 2024, slightly faster than the national average.

Tool and Die Makers

Tool makers create instruments used by others to alter the shapes and sizes of metal. Die makers create molds used to shape metal and other materials. Both of these trades can be taught in two-year programs or through internships. Tool and die makers made a median salary of $50,290 in May 2015, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The BLS also reported that jobs in this field are expected to shrink by 13% between 2014 and 2024.

Industrial Engineering Technicians

Industrial engineering technicians work under industrial engineers to help improve the efficiency of machine designs. They study factors such as personnel productivity and material use, and make suggestions based on their findings. These professionals possess either an associate's degree or a certificate. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, industrial engineering technicians earned a median salary of $53,780 in May 2015. Jobs are expected to decrease by 5% in this field between 2014 and 2024, due to an industry-wide decrease in manufacturing positions.

Educational Options

Mastercam training programs require a high school diploma and vocational training. Generally, degrees are not offered in Mastercam training, with students who complete these programs instead receiving professional certificates. Courses or a series of courses are offered that can be taken part-time. Courses generally provide hands-on experience. Usually, Windows operating system experience in copying, deleting and editing files and moving through directories is required for entry into programs.

Mastercam training is available at public and state schools through the country. It is offered at both 2-year community colleges and 4-year colleges and universities.

Educational Info

Most Mastercam training programs can be completed in a relatively short amount of time. For example, courses can be taken at a 4-year school once a week for a duration of three months to learn the Mastercam X2 software that focuses on basic mill and design training. Alternatively, 4-day training is offered elsewhere, which includes studies of two- through five-axis milling and routing turning, wire EDM, artistic relief, 2D and 3D design, and surface and solid modeling. Students will also learn how to import CAD files and select different utilities to suit their purposes. Those who complete such a program are qualified to become technicians, engineers and machinists.

Another program can be completed in one year. The program consists of four courses in modern computer-aided part programming. This program awards a certificate and is a pre-requisite for a more advanced degree.

Another option is a certification program which requires 80 hours of training. This leads to an exam recognized worldwide by the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute (NOCTI) that assesses the occupational skills of secondary and post-secondary institutions' students. NOCTI provides standardized tests to colleges and universities by which to evaluate students' performances.

To summarize, Mastercam training can lead to work in a number of different jobs, including becoming a machinist, a tool and die maker or an industrial engineering technician. These training programs are brief and can lead to certification in specific Mastercam software.

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