Approximately 14,600 electromechanical technicians, including microfabrication technicians, work in the U.S. Microfabrication technicians are employed by government agencies (such as the U.S. Departments of Defense, Energy, and Homeland Security and the National Institutes of Health) that conduct research on microelectromechanical systems and devices. In the private sector, technicians work in many industries, including electronics/semiconductor, automotives, defense and aerospace, materials science (including packaging, textiles, and polymers), biotechnology, nanotechnology, medicine and pharmaceuticals, food science, energy and renewable energy, defense, telecommunications, agriculture production/food processing, and environmental monitoring, control, and remediation. Technicians with advanced degrees can work as professors and researchers at colleges and universities. Some may teach science at the high school level.
Many technicians land their first jobs after obtaining experience as microfabrication interns while in school. Internships offer a great opportunity to explore different career paths, make networking contacts, and impress future bosses with your work ethic. Other popular job-search methods include using the resources of your school’s career services office, attending career fairs, working with recruiters, accessing job listings at association and industry job sites, and being active on networking sites such as LinkedIn.
Experienced technicians can advance to become microfabrication technologists and take on more scientific duties. Those who earn bachelor’s and graduate degrees can become microfabrication engineers and scientists. Some technicians with years of experience may also become teachers in high schools and those with advanced degrees may become professors.
Tips for Entry
Visit the following Web sites for job listings:
Use social media, especially LinkedIn, to network with microfabrication professionals, follow companies and keep up with industry news and developments, and apply for microfabrication technician jobs.
Speak with microfabrication technicians to learn more about the work they do, what a typical day on the job is like, and to see if this profession is a good fit for your interests and skills. Ask your school's career services office for help with setting up a remote or in-person interview.
Join the Technology Student Association for access to educational programs and conferences, as well as to learn about scholarship and award opportunities and to participate in local, state, and national competitions. Visit the Web site for more information, https://tsaweb.org.