Machine Tool Operation
33-credit Technical Diploma
Program Code 31-420-1
Machinists, or machine tool operators, produce parts to precise specifications, generally from setup to operation. In this program, acquire skills for the safe operation of engine lathes, vertical milling machines and surface grinders. Learn to operate computer numerical control (CNC) machines, interpret engineering drawings and use applied mathematics.
How Long It Will Take
Depending on course load, full-time students could complete this program in one year.
You can begin this program in the fall or spring semester.
How This Program Is Offered
This is offered on campus in a traditional classroom/lab setting.
What Makes This Program Unique
- Develop skills in WCTC’s state-of-the-art Terry Lutz Integrated Manufacturing Center.
- Take part in a state and national award-winning SkillsUSA team.
- Work on cross-functional projects with students from other areas of manufacturing.
- Advance your career by applying credits earned in this technical diploma to the Tool and Die Making technical diploma.
For the courses you’ll take, semester sequence, pathways and course descriptions, view the program catalog page.
You may have the opportunity to obtain credit for the college-level skills and knowledge you've already acquired. Learn more about credit for prior learning.
How To Apply
- Apply online and pay the $30 application fee.
- Submit official high school transcript.
- Complete placement assessment (Math only).
Deadlines To Know*
Fall 2021 Start
- Submit application by August 2, 2021
- Complete checklist items by August 9, 2021
Spring 2021 Start
- Submit application by January 5, 2021
- Complete checklist items by January 11, 2021
Summer 2021 Start
- This program cannot be started in summer.
* Application deadlines are subject to change based on program demand.
Financial Aid Eligibility
As a program student, you are eligible to receive:
- Financial aid loans
- Other forms of assistance
Learn more about financial aid.
The cost of your degree depends on a number of factors, including where you live, how your program is delivered, how long it takes to finish your program and the financial aid you receive.
Learn more about tuition and fees.
$31,000 – $41,000 annually
Salary range estimates based on wages for related occupations in Waukesha County as reported by Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI). Individual wages may vary based on experience, industry, location and specific job requirements.
Check the WCTC Graduate Success Report to view our graduates’ entry wages.
If you have an aptitude for math, are interested in building things, working with machinery and equipment, and are mechanically inclined, a career as a machine tool operator may be right for you.
- CNC Operator
- Tool Room Machinist
- Machine Tool Operator
Whether you're a high school student interested in earning college credits or a college student interested in transferring to a four-year university after graduation, our dual-enrollment and transfer-credit agreements will help you take the next step in your education and career.
High School Dual Credits
Dual enrollment offers high school juniors and seniors an opportunity to get a head start in high-demand fields through earning college credits. Learn about the credit options.
Transfer Opportunities After WCTC
WCTC has credit transfer agreements with many four-year institutions that allow our degree graduates to transfer credits into a baccalaureate program, often at junior-level standing.
- Contact the school to which you'd like to transfer to make sure you understand its transfer policy.
- Talk to your WCTC program advisor about your intent to transfer so he/she can help you plan.
- If you're transferring within the University of Wisconsin (UW) System, contact your desired institution about its transfer policy and visit the UW System's transfer resource page.