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P-TECH student increases workload at Rand Machine Products

Submitted Photo P-TECH student Joseph Schwartz of Southwestern has been taking advantage of New York Pause to increase his workload at Rand Machine Products in Falconer. He credits the knowledge he’s gained during his time at P-TECH in helping him secure employment in a field he’s passionate about.

Students enrolled in WNY P-TECH College and Career Academy in Dunkirk typically spend their day working on their specialty area while in pursuit of an associate degree from Jamestown Community College.

With New York Pause in place and school buildings closed for the remainder of the year, some students are utilizing the skills they acquired in the classroom and are applying them in their field.

“I’ve been working for Rand Machine Products in Falconer for three months and I was working four hours a day when school was in session and now I’m working 12:30-9:30,” said Joe Schwartz, a Southwestern student enrolled in P-TECH in Dunkirk. “I’ve been able to use everything I’ve learned so far at P-TECH to get this job.”

WNY P-TECH is an up-to-six-year program that prepares students to enter the workforce with an associate degree in welding technology or mechanical technology with a specialization in CADD or machine tool. While still in school, students can tour businesses, intern for and even secure jobs in the industry prior to graduation. Joe is currently specializing in welding and machine theory at P-TECH and plans to continue his education in machine theory in college.

“I was able to get this job because of my experience at P-TECH,” he said. “Like I told my boss, we don’t come out of school with four years of CNC machining experience but we come out with good work ethics and had a good base knowledge of how to measure parts, flip inserts, and identify problems (to name a few).”

Eighth-grade students entering ninth grade for the 2020-21 school year who are interested in P-TECH can still complete applications for enrollment. Applications can now be completed online by visiting www.e2ccb.org/PTECH.cfm or contact WNY P-TECH principal William Smock at wsmock@e2ccb.org or CAM P-TECH principal Paula Ferneza at pferneza@e2ccb.org for more information.

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