Texarkana college receives grant for new machinery course

Goal is to help address shortage of machinists in the area
Updated: Jun. 10, 2021 at 4:23 PM CDT
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TEXARKANA, Texas (KSLA) - One local college is starting a course they say will help supply area industries with needed employees and also serve as a catalyst for area growth.

The Texarkana Community College is beginning a new Computerized Numerical Control Machinery course.

College spokesman Thomas Holt said the college was contacted by several area industries to provide this training. With the help of a nearly $200,000 grant, the college was able to purchase equipment to make the course possible. The course teaches students how to fabricate existing metal parts and how to program and develop new parts.

“Once we get CNC operators in here and get them out of the door, in 12 weeks they will be able to go out and work with local industry right from the get go,” said Holt.

Holt said they believe the CNC course will not only provide local manufacturers the employees they need, but will also act as a tool to bring more businesses to the area.

“If we want to develop and grow and get new industry to our area to create more jobs, more good paying jobs for our area, we need to have something for the industry to look at and look forward to having a steady workforce,” said Holt.

Nick Paxton is with Smith Blair, a pipe and coupling company in Texarkana. There are around 300 employees here, and Paxton said there is a need for a special group of workers at this company as well as other industries in the area.

“Having a quality and educated machinist is a very important roll in our industry,” said Paxton.

The training course will begin June 21.

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