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NASCAR Tech Grad Blazes a Trail in the Aerospace Industry

UTI Profile Image Universal Technical Institute Jan 22, 2021 ·
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Graduates of UTI’s CNC Machining Technology program go on to pursue careers in a wide variety of industries, from transportation and defense to medical and electronics. Some of our grads have also gone on to pursue careers in aerospace, like Wyatt Pearson.

Wyatt graduated from NASCAR Tech in 2020 and has been working as a CNC operator for Compaero Inc. in North Carolina. Despite the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, he’s been working full-time to help his company meet the rising demand for the parts they create.

Keep reading to learn about Wyatt’s inspiring story and how he launched his career in the CNC machining industry.

Where It All Began

Wyatt grew up in a small town in West Virginia. From a young age, he was interested in the world of manufacturing and understanding how things work. He loved working with his hands and playing with Legos, and as he got older his interests shifted to cars, lawn mowers and all kinds of machinery.

While in high school, Wyatt took a machine shop program through his school’s career center. It was here that he learned he had a knack for repairing things and working with metal and wood. He earned a certification, and from there began looking into different machine shop programs.

After researching programs near him, Wyatt ended up enrolling at a traditional four-year college, where he completed his freshman year. However, he discovered that this wasn’t for him, and he wasn’t satisfied with the career path it was putting him on.

Around this time, Wyatt began looking into NASCAR Tech in Mooresville, North Carolina. He knew someone who had attended the school and had grown up loving the world of NASCAR, so taking a tour of the campus made perfect sense. After looking into the CNC program and getting a feel for the school, he knew it was the right choice.

Making the Decision to Attend NASCAR Tech

The move from West Virginia to North Carolina was big for Wyatt — he didn’t see himself moving so far from home at just 20 years old. However, he knew it was the right move for his career and was happy with his decision once he got to Mooresville.

During his training, Wyatt learned a lot from his instructors. He appreciated the industry experience they offered and the real-world element they brought to the classroom. “They know what they’re doing and they’re here to show you how to do the same thing,” he shares.

While in school, Wyatt worked at the local Bass Pro Shops. This was the perfect fit for him because he loves the outdoors. He was grateful for NASCAR Tech’s Employment Services department and the fact that they were able to connect him with that opportunity, as well as his current full-time position in the CNC industry.

Wyatt’s favorite memory from his experience at NASCAR Tech was the feeling he had on graduation day. Getting the certificate with his name on it meant everything — and he felt like he had accomplished something. “I knew there was a future in this for me,” he says.

Launching His Career

While Wyatt’s graduation ceremony was impacted by the pandemic, he was still able to finish all of his training hands-on. A few months after graduation, Employment Services helped to connect him with an opportunity with Compaero Inc.

Compaero supplies parts for the aerospace and defense industries. As an operator, Wyatt is responsible for ensuring the machines are running correctly at all times, and he inspects parts to ensure they meet the required specifications. The shop creates everything from shrink boot adapters to circular backshells to connector accessories.

According to Wyatt, manufacturing is a constant process all day. The shop creates thousands of parts, and each one has to be within a particular set of specifications. CNC machining is all about efficiency, while also maintaining an incredibly high level of accuracy.

I was impressed by how well it went. I’m glad I took that path now.
Wyatt Pearson, CNC Machining Technology program graduate, on his training at NASCAR Tech

Wyatt is thankful for everything he learned at NASCAR Tech, and the knowledge and skills he gained from the program have given him a strong foundation he’s been able to build upon in the industry.6 “I was impressed by how well it went. I’m glad I took that path now,” he says.

Transferable Skills

In the CNC industry, there are a wide variety of paths you can take. Manufacturing isn’t going anywhere — and the industry needs skilled professionals who can work with this machinery and oversee the production of these complex parts.

“You have a trade for the rest of your life,” Wyatt shares. “You can do something most people can’t.”

Training for a career in CNC machining can equip you with transferable skills which, according to Wyatt, is one of the biggest benefits of choosing this path. This has been proven to be true during the pandemic, as many operators and machinists have remained working full-time and sometimes overtime hours.

“If I had any other job, I could have been out of work for who knows how long,” Wyatt says. If he hadn’t attended NASCAR Tech, he would still be in school completing his four-year degree.

What Does It Take to Break Into the CNC Machining Industry?

Wyatt’s advice for those looking to take a career path similar to his is to treat school as though it were your full-time job. Go to all of your classes, be on time, and give as much effort as you can. The more you put into it, the more you get out of it.

Overall, Wyatt is thankful to have a career he loves at such a young age. One day, he hopes to work his way up to a CNC programmer role, where he would be writing programs for the machines to run on. We’re excited to watch him pursue his goal!

Get Trained in Less Than a Year

Created in conjunction with Roush Yates Engines, UTI’s CNC Machining Technology program is designed to put you on track to a career in the CNC industry in just 36 weeks.1 To learn more, visit our program page and request information to connect with an Admissions Representative today.

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By submitting this form, I agree that Universal Technical Institute, Inc., Custom Training Group, Inc., and their representatives may email, call, and / or text me with marketing messages about educational programs and services, as well as for school - related communications, at any phone number I provide, including a wireless number, using prerecorded calls or automated technology. I understand that my consent is not required to apply, enroll or make any purchase.

By submitting this form, I further understand and agree that all information provided is subject to UTI’s Privacy Policy available at uti.edu/privacy-policy

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