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Civil Engineering and Surveying revamped at A-B Tech

March 25, 2014

A-B Tech student Brannon Honeycutt recently enrolled in the Civil Engineering program.

The Engineering and Applied Technology Division at A-B Tech Community College announced that Civil Engineering Technology and Geomatics Technology programs will be offered in Fall 2014. Both programs have been enhanced based on input from area employers.

Geomatics, formerly known as Surveying Technology, now has an added geographic information system (GIS) component and more emphasis is placed on sustainability in the impact and design.

“It’s a little more comprehensive than it used to be,” said Jim Sullivan, Civil Engineering and Geomatics Technology Chair. “We’re still teaching surveying, but mapping and GIS and sustainability are new to the curriculum.”

A-B Tech graduates get full-time jobs locally with good pay and benefits, according to Sullivan. “Our graduates are working in both public and private sector jobs. Half the employees at local engineering and surveying firm Vaughn and Melton are graduates of ours. Bunnell-Lammons Engineering is also hiring our grads and planning to hire more. It’s a very portable degree, so we have graduates working all over the country.”

Last year, Civil Engineering Technology students were able to work with the Blue Ridge Parkway to redesign the drinking fountains to make them more accessible for maintenance and repairs. The project was so successful that students are now developing a new design for picnic tables in the park.

Jared Ownbey, Civil Engineering and Geomatics Technology Instructor, earned his degree from A-B Tech. “What got me into the field was that it paid well while getting to play outside,” he said. “There are a number of employers that employ Geomatics Technology graduates and a fair number of graduates start their own surveying business. 

“We also have articulation agreements with four-year universities so our graduates can transfer and further their education. Salaries start at about $15 an hour, which is about $30,000 a year. After a few years experience they can start earning more. These are good paying jobs here in our community,” Sullivan said.

Prospective students should contact Jim Sullivan for more information at jsullivan@abtech.edu or 828-398-7343.

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Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate degrees, diplomas and certificates.  Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College.

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