Grand opening unveils state-of-the-art industrial education facility
09.15.2017 | By Melissa Trevizo
View and download photos of the San Jacinto College North Campus Center for Industrial Technology grand opening here.
HOUSTON, Texas – San Jacinto College marked the grand opening of the new Center for Industrial Technology (CIT) on the College’s North campus, Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017. More than 100 guests, including faculty and staff, elected officials, industry partners and community members, attended the event.
The facility is located front and center on the College’s North campus at 5801 Uvalde Rd., in Houston. It is a location that speaks to the increase in demand of skilled workers in all areas industrial technology.
“This state-of-the-art facility is a direct response to industry need,” said Dr. Brenda Hellyer, San Jacinto College Chancellor. “We have a strong economy in the Gulf Coast region and we understand the importance of supporting our industry partners to fill the workforce pipeline. This facility will help incumbent workers get the credentials they need to keep our region’s economy strong, while training new workers to meet industry demand."
The grand opening featured remarks from Dr. Hellyer; Dr. Bill Raffetto, provost; Mark Johnson, dean of business and technology; and Dr. Sallie Kay Janes, associate vice chancellor of continuing professional development.
The $36 million, 114,000 square foot center features technologically advanced facilities for welding, pipefitting, electrical technology, air conditioning, diesel technology, engineering design graphics, construction management and sheet metal and advanced manufacturing.
Through support from industry, San Jacinto College is able to offer some of the “finest facilities in the state, if not the country,” according to Johnson.
In collaboration with International Trucks of Houston, the diesel technology department recently purchased a 2012 Navistar Prostar 18-wheeler. This new truck allows students to learn how to troubleshoot advanced electrical issues that many diesel engine industry professionals encounter.
Both the commercial air conditioning and pipefitting technology programs have four-course occupational certificates that allow students to become employable in only one semester. Employment for graduates is projected to grow 12 percent from 2014 to 2024. Median pay is currently $50,823 per year in the Gulf Coast region according to 2016 data from the Texas Workforce Commission. Many pipefitting students have been recipients of scholarships through a generous gift from PVF Roundtable that offers them $500 upon enrollment and $500 upon certificate completion.
Electrical technology has three state-of-the-art labs that include a hands-on wiring lab, a motor control lab with 20 computers containing CAD software and a PLC skills lab with programmable logic controllers.
The San Jacinto College welding technology program is the largest technical program in the business and technology division. With four full-time and nine part-time instructors, the College enrolls more than 600 students in any given term. The CIT welding facility has 120 welding stations, most equipped with Lincoln Electric welding machines and a state-of-the-art Lincoln Real Weld diagnostic tool, that provides students with real-time data to make them more efficient welders.
Each of these programs are supported by industry partners and continue to grow in demand.
“When you step back and look at our CIT building and the programs within it, it stands at the front of our campus as a symbol of our commitment to our business and industry partners and perhaps more importantly to our students,” said Johnson. “It’s our promise to our students that when they come to San Jacinto College and enroll in our industrial technology education programs, they are going to obtain in-demand high-level skills needed to become productive members of this dynamic and modern workforce.”
About San Jacinto College
Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, since 1961. As a fiscally sound institution, the College currently holds bond ratings of AA and Aa2 by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s, respectively. San Jacinto College is a 2017 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence Rising Star Award recipient and an Achieving the Dream Leader College. Approximately 45,000 credit and non-credit students each semester benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success. The College offers eight areas of study that prepare a diverse body of students to transfer to four-year colleges or universities or enter the workforce with the skills needed to support the growing industries along the Texas Gulf Coast. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.