Machine Technology Certificate

Why Choose Machine Technology Certificate at CLC?

95-100% placement

New advanced CNC and EDM machines that are the same as used in the industry

Articulation to BSU

High demand, high wage employment

Remodeled and updated classroom and lab

Industry experienced instructors

Multiple pathways for specialization

About the Program

The Machine Tool Technology Program at Central Lakes College uses a curriculum of technical industrial standards set forth by a strong industrial advisory board made up of industry leaders in multiple manufacturing career areas. It prepares students in the areas of geometric tolerancing, advanced CAD/CAM, and advanced CNC milling, turning, and electrical discharge machine (EDM) operations.

Instruction takes place in a well-equipped shop for a hands-on, practical experience with lathes and mills, computer-aided-drafting and design software, precision machinery, computerized equipment and training using wire and sink EDMs. The demand for highly skilled machinists grows with the increased use of technology in the industry and the need to replace retired workers.

Program Information

Special Department Information:

Program Course Requirements

CMAE 1502  Technical Mathematics (3 cr)
CMAE 1506  Introduction to Computer Applications (2 cr)
CMAE 1510  Print Reading (2 cr)
CMAE 1514  MSSC Safety (2 cr)
CMAE 1518  MSSC Manufacturing Processes & Production (2 cr)
CMAE 1522  MSSC Quality Practice & Measurement (2 cr)
CMAE 1526  MSSC Maintenance Awareness (2 cr)
CMAE 1530  Machining Math (2 cr)
CMAE 1532  Machine Tool Print Reading (2 cr)
CMAE 1534  Machine Tool Technology Theory (2 cr)
CMAE 1536  Machine Tool Technology Lab I (2 cr)
CMAE 1538  Machine Tool Technology Lab II (2 cr)
CMAE 1540  Introduction to CNC (3 cr)
CMAE 1542  Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing (2 cr)
Total 30 Credits


Career Description: Production machinists work primarily in the production of large volumes of one single part, particularly parts that require strict adherence to specs and involve many complicated operations. Machinists decide what cutting tool is used and the speed the part is made, as well as the feed rate, while the programmer is in charge of setting up the path the cut will follow.

Program Information: This certificate provides introductory courses to production and machining technology to obtain basic skills for other manufacturing career pathways. Training prepares the graduate for an entry-level machinist production position. Students engage in technical math, introductory computer skills, print interpretation, manufacturing processes, machine tool theory and lab, quality control, maintenance and safety.

Program Outcomes:
Graduates will be able to:

  • Gain a general knowledge of production technology processes;
  • Gain knowledge and understanding of interpreting production prints;
  • Apply technical mathematics skills to production processes;
  • Demonstrate basic computer skills;
  • Gain knowledge and understanding of machine tool print reading, machine tool technology theory and lab principles, machining math, an introduction to computer numerical control, and geometric dimensioning and tolerancing.

Special Program Requirements:

Transfer Opportunities: This certificate is offered collaboratively with Northland Community & Technical College, Northwest Technical College, Minneapolis Community and Technical College, Pine Technical College, Riverland Community College, St. Cloud Technical and Community College, and St. Paul College. Courses are transferable within all the listed colleges.

Career Opportunities: The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development long-term projections show the need for a number of replacement workers in the machinist occupation. Advanced manufacturing continues to be considered a high-demand, high-pay industry in Minnesota. The certificate program yields marketable skills and knowledge to entry-level employees.

Career Titles: Machine tool operator, tool operator, production worker, machine setter or tender.


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Mike Fitcher

Adjunct Instructor
Phone: 218-855-8000
Staples Machine Tool Lab
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Ronn Redemske

Machine Trades Instructor
Phone: 218-894-5117
Staples A115

Student Testimonials


I chose Central Lakes College because it was close to home and the Machine Tool Technology Program is known for their great instructors and educational opportunities. The Machine Trades field has a lot of jobs and career opportunities available and allows me to be creative and to work with my hands. After I graduated in 2013, I was hired by Diamond Tool & Engineering in Bertha, MN as a Wire EDM Operator and CNC Machinist. And after only a year, I am being training to be the EDM Department Lead. The degree I earned prepared me well for this position.


I chose the Machine Tool Technology Program at Central Lakes College because it was close to home and I am able to get the diploma done in one year. It is a concentrated program and a lot of work in a short time, but it is giving me the basic foundation in all aspects of machine technology so I can go into any shop and pick up their processes quickly. When I complete this training, I will gain a promotion, a wage increase and increased responsibilities with my current employer.

Employment Statistics

For more information regarding employment statistics, career salary information and estimated job growth, follow the resource links below:

Gainful Employment – Machine Technology Certificate

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