Many of my columns focus on trends and developments in Nevada’s various economic and industrial sectors. Today we’re going to look at the human side of the equation, and explore some of the fascinating degree programs offered by our local colleges and universities – each specifically designed by our educational institutions to provide our students with the skills and training they’ll need as they enter the rapidly changing workforce. (Full disclosure: I‘ve paraphrased much of this information from their course catalogs.)
Sierra Nevada College – Digital Arts & Entrepreneurship or Management
This interdisciplinary major requires a core set of Art and Digital Arts courses and allows students to choose a focus in either Entrepreneurship or Management. The courses address the rapidly growing fields of entertainment technology and digital graphics, and also encompass foundational entrepreneurship or management skills. Specific courses include Modern Art History; Foundations of Visual Design; and Financing Entrepreneur Ventures
Truckee Meadows Community College – Geothermal Plant Operator Program
Geothermal Plant Operators control and monitor geothermal power production, injection wells, pumps, condensers, turbines, generators, and auxiliary equipment used in power plants. They regulate the generator output and monitor instruments to maintain voltage and regulate electricity flow. Courses include Pre-Calculus; Well Design, Construction and Geology; and Environmental Regulations for Geothermal Plant Operators.
Western Nevada College – Associate of Applied Science: Automated Systems
The Automated Systems specialization focuses on the integration of computers and electronic technologies to control industrial systems and machines. Courses include basic electronics, computer systems, wiring, and electrical controls, providing students with technical theory, and hands-on practice to install and maintain automated systems for a variety of industries. Some of the specific courses include Home Technology Convergence; Applied Programmable Logic Controllers; and Computer Forensics.
University of Nevada Reno – Minor in Unmanned Autonomous Systems
The College of Engineering introduced this new, interdisciplinary minor degree program just a few months ago. Unmanned autonomous systems (sometimes referred to as “drones”) are machines capable of traveling by air, land or sea without a human crew on board. This rapidly expanding industry requires highly educated individuals who understand the fundamentals of UAS in terms of design, engineering, operation and data analysis. UNR’s interdisciplinary minor provides students with skills and experiences including courses in Aerodynamics, Digital Control Engineering, and Introduction to Fluid Mechanics.
Dave Archer is President / CEO of member-supported NCET.org, which produces business and technology events to help small businesses and entrepreneurs. (www.NCET.org)