Texas State Technical College will debut an Associate of Applied Science degree in Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology – Journeyman this fall at the Waco campus.
Some of the classes that students will take include Backflow Prevention, Basic Blueprint Reading for Plumbers, Construction Estimating, OSHA Regulations – Construction Industry, and Plumbing Codes I and II.
Christopher Porter, an instructor in TSTC’s Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology program, said now is a great time to add the associate degree in light of the opening earlier this year of the Texas State Plumbing Examiners Testing Facility on the Waco campus. The testing facility is the second of its kind in Texas.
The associate degree already has the interest of some students currently in the program.
Kristian Robins, of Waco, said earning the associate degree means he will be able to make more money over time in the profession.
Before coming to TSTC, Robins was in the U.S. Army and worked as a corrections officer. A friend already in the program recommended that Robins enroll at TSTC.
“The instructors are interactive,” Robins said. “It makes it easier to understand things.”
Robins said he wants to open a plumbing business with his friend after working in the field for a few years.
Connor Barnett, of Robinson, said plumbing is fulfilling work. He said the associate degree will put him closer to taking the state plumbing journeyman’s test.
Before coming to TSTC, Barnett studied social work at another college but discovered during an internship that he had to make a change.
“I didn’t like sitting in the office,” he said. “I wanted to work somewhere with my hands.”
The program also offers certificates of completion in Plumbing and Pipefitting Technology – Tradesman and Plumbing, and Pipefitting Technology – Apprentice With Endorsements. Students can also earn an occupational skills award in Basic Plumbing.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s O*Net Online website, plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters in Texas make an annual median salary of more than $48,000. There will be a need for more than 57,600 workers in the state by 2028, according to the website.
Registration for the fall semester is underway. For more information, go to tstc.edu.