Machine Tool Technology

Master the Art of Machine Tools and Open Doors to In-Demand Careers

Machine Tool student working with the CNC equipment

Program Overview

Are you intrigued by precision manufacturing and keen to work with state-of-the-art equipment? The Machine Tool Technology program at College of Western Idaho (CWI) is your gateway to a career in this high-demand industry. Whether you aim for a Basic Technical Certificate, Intermediate Technical Certificate, or an Associate of Applied Science degree, this program equips you with the skills needed for machine tool operation.

Learn to expertly handle engine lathes, milling machines, grinders, and computer numerical control (CNC) machines. Delve into the materials and processes used by the metals manufacturing industry. The program combines classroom instruction with practical experience, ensuring you are well versed in precision measurements and test equipment. You will also solve real-world problems and build connections with leading local employers, setting the stage for a successful career in a variety of industries.

Degree or Certificate Type

Associate of Applied Science

Intermediate Technical Certificate

Basic Technical Certificate

Time to Complete

1 – 2 years

Primary Location

Program Exploration – March 13

Learn more about the Machine Tool Technology program, meet the instructors, and get your questions answered!


Machine tool student working on machine in lab

Learning Opportunities

  • Hands-On Equipment Training: Master the use of essential machine tools in a real-world setting.
  • Industry-Relevant Skills: Develop expertise in various materials and manufacturing processes.
  • Problem-Solving Experience: Tackle practical challenges, enhancing your readiness for the workplace.
  • Career Networking: Build valuable industry connections with local manufacturing and machine shops.
  • Diverse Career Paths: Prepare for opportunities across a range of industries that value precision manufacturing skills.

Area of Study

Degrees & Certificates

Machine Tool Technology – Associate of Applied Science Degree

Machine Tool Technology – Intermediate Technical Certificate

Machine Tool Technology – Basic Technical Certificate

Worker in machine bay

Career Opportunities

  • Industrial Machinery Mechanics

    Repair, install, adjust, or maintain industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems. May also install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to plans. Excludes “Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanics, Except Engines” (49-3042), and “Maintenance Workers, Machinery” (49-9043).


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Machinists

    Set up and operate a variety of machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments out of metal. Includes precision instrument makers who fabricate, modify, or repair mechanical instruments. May also fabricate and modify parts to make or repair machine tools or maintain industrial machines, applying knowledge of mechanics, mathematics, metal properties, layout, and machining procedures. Machinists who primarily program or operate computer numerically controlled (CNC) equipment are classified in “Computer Numerically Controlled Tool Operators and Programmers” (51-9160).


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Millwrights

    Install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to layout plans, blueprints, or other drawings.


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

  • Maintenance Workers, Machinery

    Lubricate machinery, change parts, or perform other routine machinery maintenance. Excludes “Maintenance and Repair Workers, General” (49-9071).


    Annual Openings*


    Hourly Median Wage*


    Annual Median Salary


    Growth (2021 – 2031)*

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*Data sourced from Lightcast™ (2023), a global leader in labor market analytics, and limited to the state of Idaho. Contact CWI Institutional Research for questions regarding this data.


Step 1

  • Apply to CWI.
  • Choose Machine Tool Technology as your major.

Step 2

  • Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).


Academic Calendar New Student Checklist


Graphic of tool with purple and gold flare like symbol

College of Western Idaho is proud to compete in SkillsUSA, a nationwide organization seeking to improve the quality of our nation's future skilled workforce through personal, workplace, and technical skills training.


The College of Western Idaho Foundation recently received an $18,000 grant from the Gene Haas Foundation that will support the College’s Machine Tool Technology Program.

Read more about Machine Tool Technology Receives 18K from Gene Haas Foundation

In his fourth year at College of Western Idaho, Machine Tool Technology student, Wade Kindberg, continues to learn new skills and trades for a future career.

Read more about Finding His True Calling through College of Western Idaho

New scholarship honors late CWI Machine Tool Technology graduate, Nathaniel Stewart Dando.

Read more about Dando 300 Scholarship Honors Late CWI Student

The Nagel Foundation scholarship empowers second-year career and technical education students to complete their education.

Read more about Nagel Foundation Continues Commitment to Students

Congratulations to Bradley Dougal, a 2019-2020 Nagel Foundation scholarship recipient.

Read more about Education Sparks Future

Biology instructor, Dusty Perkins, Biology Club, and Machine Tool Technology Program to host a native bee habitat building during Connections Project.

Read more about Connections Project to Feature Native Bee Habitat Project

Annual STEM Out! event introduces students to STEM careers through hands-on workshops presented by CWI faculty and students.

Read more about STEM Out! Event a Success

After spending years in the armed forces, many veterans attend college seeking degrees to help them discover the next chapter in their lives. A number of these veterans choose the College of Western...

Read more about Veteran Finds Warm Welcome at CWI

CWI swept away the competition with 37 medals at this year's SkillsUSA State Conference.

Read more about CWI SkillsUSA Wins Big at State Competition

Meridian-based Micro 100 Tool Corporation recently donated more than $16,000 worth of brand new tooling items to CWI's Machine Tool Technology program.

Read more about Gift Makes Measurable Difference at CWI

A group of CWI students and recent graduates also won medals in a school record five events.

Read more about CWI Celebrates First SkillsUSA National Title

CWI Machine Tool Technology students have access to $17,500 in scholarships because of a donation from the Gene Haas Foundation.

Read more about CWI Receives Grant to Help Fill High-Demand Jobs
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