The electronics industry in Texas is booming. According to the Texas Economic Development Corporation, the Lone Star state currently ranks second in electronics employment nationwide, with companies such as Apple, Samsung and National Instruments spearheading even more growth in the coming years. From electronic instruments to semiconductors to computers and communications, there are many opportunities for graduates of electronics schools in Texas.
Specializations for electronics professionals in Texas
In some industries, specializations are optional. In the world of electronics, however, specializations are necessary in order to choose the best career path. Those who attend electronics schools in Texas can decide on their specialization from the start, or explore different avenues in the context of their degree studies. For example, someone interested in working with computer hardware might take computer science courses in addition to those in electronics. Some schools are providing newer specializations that follow the evolution of modern technology. A good example is the Acoustic Edge Institute of Houston, which now offers a mobile electronic installation program. This enables electronics professionals to install all types of electronics in vehicles.
A few of the more common specialties in the electronics industry include:
- Electronics installers and repairers are needed in a wide variety of industries to troubleshoot, install and repair various electronic equipment.
- Electro-mechanical technicians work with electronics that operate in conjunction with mechanical components, such as robot assembly machines in manufacturing.
- Electronics engineering technicians work under the supervision of engineers to develop, design and test various electronics, including those used in medicine, communications, navigation, utilities and more.
- Electronics engineers design and create new electrical equipment, from power grid segments to basic home electronics.
Keep in mind that there are other career paths available in the field. Depending upon the chosen course of study, students might work with computer hardware, audio and visual equipment, power lines and electrical grids, ATMs and office machines, and much more.
Degrees and certifications at electronics schools in Texas
There are numerous degrees and certificate programs available through electronics schools in Texas. Certificate programs typically require a few months to complete and can prepare students to move directly into work as an electronic repairer or installer. Other positions require a degree for entry-level work . Here are some examples of electronics careers and their educational requirements according to the BLS:
- Electrical or electronics installer and repairer: Specialized training at a technical college
- Electro-mechanical technician: Associate's degree or postsecondary certificate
- Electrical or electronics engineering technician: Associate's degree
- Electrical or electronics engineer: Bachelor's degree
There are currently 19 accredited programs in electrical and electronics engineering in Texas, according to the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). All of those programs are offered at the bachelor's degree level. Additionally, there are numerous community colleges and technical schools in the state that offer associate degrees and certificates for those who are interested in any number of electronics-related professions.
There are a number of ways to earn an electronics certification in Texas as well. Some of the top organizations providing certifications include the Electronics Technicians Association International, the International Society of Certified Electronics Technicians and the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies.
Salary and career overview for electricians in Texas
Electronics professionals are in demand across several industries, including telecommunications, transportation and communication. In the state of Texas, some of these jobs are expected to see higher growth than others. According to Projections Central, the following jobs in the electronics field are expected to see the highest rates of growth in Texas from 2012 to 2022:
- Medical equipment repairers: 39.4%
- Audio and video equipment technicians: 26.6%
- Electro-mechanical technicians: 25.2%
- Computer hardware engineers: 24%
- Electrical power-line installers and repairers: 23.7%
Those in the field who earn the proper education, certifications and experience can look forward to excellent salary opportunities in Texas. According to BLS data, the following jobs reported the following mean annual salaries in Texas in 2014:
- Computer hardware engineers: $103,060
- Electronics engineers: $100,000
- Electronics engineering technicians: $62,550
- Electrical power-line installers and repairers: $54,470
- Electro-mechanical technicians: $58,890
- Medical equipment repairers: $44,750
- Audio and video equipment technicians: $39,610
Those who want to take advantage of the high job growth and excellent pay of some electronics professions in Texas can begin with attending electronics schools. Certificate courses or degree programs are the first step toward a successful future in the Lone Star state.
- ABET Accredited Programs, http://main.abet.org/aps/Accreditedprogramsearch.aspx
- Acoustic Edge Institute of Houston, http://www.acousticedge.com/
- Electrical and Electronics Engineering Technicians, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/electrical-and-electronics-engineering-technicians.htm#tab-1
- Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/electrical-and-electronics-engineers.htm#tab-1
- Electrical and Electronics Installers and Repairers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/electrical-and-electronics-installers-and-repairers.htm#tab-1
- Electro-mechanical Technicians, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, January 8, 2014, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/electro-mechanical-technicians.htm
- Long Term Projections 2012 to 2022, Texas, Projections Central, https://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
- May 2014 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Texas, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_tx.htm
- "The Texas Electronics Industry," Texas Economic Development Division, 2013, https://texaswideopenforbusiness.com/sites/default/files/11/13/14/texas_electronics_report.pdf