Degrees and Certifications:
Mr. Mike Wilson
My name is Mike Wilson. I am from Belton, SC and a graduate of Belton-Honea Path High School. This is my 34th year of being a Career and Technology instructor. I have taught at several schools during my career including Crescent High School, Russell Career Center in Greenwood District 50, Hamilton Career Center in Oconee County, Pendleton High School, and now AIT.
My educational background includes an Associates Degree for Tri-County Technical College in Industrial Electronics, and a Bachelors Degree from Clemson University in Technology and Human Resource Development. I was also a National Board Certified Teacher from 2010-2020.
Throughout my career, I have had the opportunity to teach in several different areas of instruction, including; Residential, Commercial, and Industrial Electricity, Industrial Electronics, Building Construction areas of electrical and plumbing, Cisco IT Essentials, PLTW in Principles of Engineering, and now Mechatronics. I am also proud to serve my alma mater as an adjunct instructor for Tri-County Technical College in the areas of Industrial Electronics and Mechatronics.
What Is Mechatronics?
Mechatronics educates a student in the broad field of Industrial Maintenance. This program involves electrical, mechanical, fluid power, instrumentation, electronics, robotics/automation, computer components, and control systems. The program prepares students who enjoy working with their hands as well as understanding simple to complex systems. Mechatronics is a dynamic field that changes daily with the rapid improvements in technology and computer systems. Systems are networked to meet the demands of automated manufacturing processes, and technicians are trained to meet necessary entry-level industrial skills and entry into a postsecondary program at a technical college. Dual credit may be available through some SC technical colleges.
MECHATRONICS Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is Mechatronics?
A: Mechatronics is basically Industrial Maintenance and involves working with all types of equipment used in industry.
Q: What types of equipment would I be working on?
A: The job of a Mechatronics Technician, or Industrial Maintenance Technician involves working on several types of different equipment, and in most cases, the equipment is combined into several different kinds of systems doing several types of operations. A Mechatronics Technician commonly works with electrical, electronics, industrial motor controls, pneumatics and hydraulics, programmable logic controllers (PLCs), and mechanical systems.
Q: What are some of the companies I could work for?
A: Virtually every company requires maintenance technicians. Some of the largest employers in the area are; Michelin, Bosch, Arthrex, Duke Energy, TTI, First Quality, Electrolux, Glen Raven, and Walgreens Distribution are just a few of the larger companies. There are hundreds of maintenance, installation, and repair opportunities with supporting companies. The field of Mechatronics touches so many areas, there is basically a need everywhere. Hospital systems, food industry, logistics, HVAC, security systems, military, county and state agencies, and construction are a few people never consider.
Q: How much do Industrial Maintenance Technicians make?
A: The starting salaries in Anderson area are approximately $17.00 to $26.00 dollars an hour starting out, which is approximately $35,000 to $55,000 per year.
Q: What kind of college degree will I need to work in this field?
A: Most companies require an Associate’s Degree in Mechatronics or Industrial Electronics to work in Industrial Maintenance. Experience is the key to make yourself employable for industry.
Q: Can I earn college credit if I take Mechatronics at AIT?
A: Yes. Tri-County Technical College allows AIT students to earn Technical Advanced Placement (TAP) credit towards their degree in Mechatronics or Industrial Electronics. Dual enrollment classes are also available to seniors.
Q: What will I be learning at AIT?
A: Mechatronics 1 students learn Direct Current (DC) Circuits. Mechatronics 2 students learn Alternating Current (AC) circuits. Mechatronics 3 students learn Industrial Control Devices (Electric Motor Controls). Mechatronics 4 students learn Advanced Manufacturing and Automation and complete a capstone project based on this content.
Q: How do I know I would like Mechatronics?
A: Are you someone who likes knowing how things work? Do you like hands-on learning? Are you interested in electricity and electronics? Do you like all things mechanical? Are you fascinated by industrial type robots which perform tasks instead of humans? Do you enjoy critical thinking and problem solving? Are you a good math and science student?
If you can answer yes to any of the above questions, you would most likely enjoy the field of Mechatronics. Talk to your counselor and join us at AIT to learn about an exciting career with endless job opportunities, great earning potential, and high demand.
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