Train for industry certifications at Western Nevada College

WNC's Auto Mechanics classes prepare individuals to earn Automotive Service Excellence credentials that repair shops and dealers want when hiring.

WNC's Auto Mechanics classes prepare individuals to earn Automotive Service Excellence credentials that repair shops and dealers want when hiring.

Spring semester at Western Nevada College is your opportunity to earn one of the industry-recognized credentials Nevada employers want from their new hires.

WNC offers certifications during spring semester that could lead to employment in industries such as manufacturing, information technology, computer-aided drafting, welding, machining, bookkeeping, health care, construction and automotive mechanics.

Spring semester begins Jan. 22.

WNC counselors are available to guide individuals through the enrollment process. Phone for an appointment at 775-445-3267.

New students to the college can prepare for enrollment at

Mechatronics/manufacturing: Individuals new to manufacturing may earn a Manufacturers Technician 1 Certification by taking three courses, including one online course in preparation to take the certification exam. These classes may be completed as quickly as an individual’s time commitment permits. The MT1 Certification prepares individuals for above entry level positions in regional manufacturing organizations.

Students who’ve earned an MT1 or bring industry experience may enroll in the Siemens Certified Mechatronic Systems Assistant Level 1 Certification classes upon instructor permission. Completion of classes prepares students to take an internationally recognized credential documenting demonstrated skills with root cause analysis, historical analysis for preventive maintenance and system-level troubleshooting. Mechatronics Systems are complex electrical, mechanical and computer technologies integrated into automated systems in high-tech industrial environments.

Tesla, Panasonic, GE Bently, Bruce Aerospace and Click Bond are some of the local manufacturers who have been hiring from Professor Emily Howarth’s skilled manufacturing program or put their technicians through the program.

These training program classes are small and intense, and focus on the methodology of thinking like a problem solver, not just a task worker. WNC is uniquely positioned to offer technicians the ability to upgrade their knowledge and skills so they can return to the workforce with new ideas and recognition of their value to the organization. Employees with Siemens mechatronic certifications contribute to organizations’ productivity. These individuals bring adaptive expertise to the automation production systems of manufacturers and distribution centers. For information, contact Howarth at

Computer-Aided Drafting: Individuals with a CAD background may enroll in the 3-D modeling course. Through the semester participants learn 3-D modeling, design simulation and introduction to data management. Successful completion of the course prepares students to take the Solidworks Certification exam.

Computer Information Technology: Individuals interested in preparing to enter the high-demand, high-wage field of information technology may choose from a variety of courses leading to several pathways and certification preparation. Most courses prepare students to sit for the certification exams. Options range from A+ and Security + to Microsoft or Linux operating systems to advanced cybersecurity.

Automotive Mechanics: By taking a series of four-week short-term classes, individuals can earn up to five Automotive Service Excellence credentials by the end of spring semester. WNC Auto Mechanics Instructor Jason Spohr said there’s a huge need for mechanics in the area and he takes up to 12 calls per semester from dealers and shops looking to hire them from WNC’s program. The program’s areas of focus during the spring are steering and suspension, auto electronics, automatic transmission and transaxles and engine performance. Individuals who didn’t participate in the first semester electronics and engine performance classes will need to talk to Spohr before being admitted into those spring classes. He can be contacted at or 775-445-4270.

Health care: Preparing for a career in health care doesn’t require a long-term educational commitment. There are several options outside WNC’s nursing program for individuals to prepare for certification to work in health care. Train to become a Certified Nursing Assistant, an Emergency Medical Technician or laboratory technician.

WNC is offering four Certified Nursing Assistant courses in Carson City and one in Fallon this spring. The six-unit course prepares students to take the Nevada licensing exam for certification as a nursing assistant. CNAs provide nursing care for patients in long-term and acute care institutions.

In addition, WNC is offering Healthcare Provider CPR (EMS 100), including two prior to the semester in Carson City and one in Fallon. This course serves as a prerequisite for admission into the nursing program, as well as the CNA course. Certification is based on the standards of the American Heart Association and requires passing a written exam and practical demonstration of skills at the end of the course. Individuals will learn basic cardiac life support and cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques.

Individuals can also train to become an Emergency Medical Technician or Advanced Emergency Medical Technician. EMS 108 prepares individuals to provide basic emergency medical care to individuals experiencing sudden illness or injury. Upon completion of the class, individuals are eligible to sit for the National Registry Examination for EMT Basic.

This spring, WNC is offering an EMS 108 course on the Carson City campus and the Fallon campus.

Advanced Emergency Medical Technicians are trained to provide more advanced airway maintenance skills, which include basic electrocardiography (ECG) arrhythmia and to utilize pharmacological interventions within the scope of practices.

An advanced EMT course (EMT 115) will also be available on the Carson City campus this spring on Monday and Wednesday from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Another option to hasten a transition into the medical field is training to become a laboratory technician (phlebotomy). LTE 101 and LTE 102 will prepare individuals to take the national certification exam. Under the direction of an instructor, students will perform a minimum of 100 successful documented blood draws.

The laboratory technician courses provide the knowledge and skills necessary to perform basic collection, identification and preservation of blood samples as applied to venipuncture techniques.

Students should check the prerequisites for all Allied Health courses and it’s recommended to begin the enrollment process early.

Welding: In one semester, individuals can proceed through four class levels and be introduced to the hundreds of welding certifications available by meeting the standards of the American Welding Society codes. Classes include instruction on code certification required by the American Petroleum Institute and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

This 21-unit accelerated program will meet from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday throughout the spring semester.

Instructor Randy Naylor said the job prospectus is extremely good for welders. “There are more jobs than people to take them,” he said.

Construction: Individuals interested in gaining credentials to work in the construction field may take two courses to gain two credentials from the National Center for Construction Education and Research. Students will gain skills and an introduction to construction management. These certifications provide the opportunity to enter the high-demand construction industry.

Individuals interested in earning an inspector of structures credential may take four inspector courses, which prepares them to pass the exam, as well as the 25 inspections the state requires before he or she qualifies for a Nevada license. The courses cover inspection of residential structures, under floor inspections, above floor inspections and supervised residential inspections for certification.

Machine Tool Technology: With more than 400 machining and computer numerical control job openings in the region in late summer, individuals can learn the skills in one semester to find immediate employment.

“If they have dedication and get hands-on skills, they’ll have a job before the semester is over,” said WNC Machine Tool Technology Instructor David Fulton. “They can take this career anywhere in the world.”

Fulton said at least three — and possibly four — National Institute for Metalworking Skills certifications can be earned in one semester. Individuals need to complete MTT courses 105 and 110 in the spring to learn the NIMS certification skills for measurement, material and safety, as well as a certification that covers job planning, benchwork and layout.

Bookkeeping: If your short-term goal is to become an accounting clerk or entry-level bookkeeper, the six-unit Certified Bookkeeper course (ACC 290) this spring can provide you with the knowledge to do so.

Students must either have passed ACC 201 with a C or better or can demonstrate a thorough knowledge of double-entry accounting to take the class.

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to sit for a national exam administered by the American Institute of Professional Bookkeepers. Upon passing this exam and completing two years of bookkeeping experience, individuals earn the right to call themselves “Certified Bookkeepers.”

Department consent to enroll in the class is required. Contact instructor for admission approval no later than Jan. 17 at or 775-423-7565, ext. 2258.

Mike Thomas to Talk at Jack C. Davis Observatory

Northern Nevada lecturer Mike Thomas will kick off the new year with free talks on Friday, Jan. 11 and Saturday, Jan. 12 at Jack C. Davis Observatory on the Western Nevada College campus in Carson City.

On Jan. 11, Thomas will focus on “The Odyssey,” Homer’s epic poem about the adventures of Odysseus following the Trojan War.

The following night, Thomas will give a presentation on “Artificial Intelligence” and the threat computers and machines could possibly have on the future of humans.

Both free lectures begin at 6:30 p.m., with doors to the observatory opening at 6.

Thomas has been providing free lectures at the observatory for more than a decade.

On Saturday nights when lectures aren’t scheduled, the observatory is open to the public from sundown to 11 p.m. At this time, the Western Nevada Astronomical Society hosts Star Parties, bringing together people with an interest in astronomy.

The observatory is located at 2699 Van Patten Drive in Carson City.

Observatory to Hold Lunar Eclipse Party on Jan. 20

Jack C. Davis Observatory will hold a total eclipse viewing event on Jan. 20.

Northern Nevadans will be treated to a total lunar eclipse. This will last for about an hour and the Moon will turn an orangish-red during this time.

“The entire eclipse event should be visible from Northern Nevada,” said Jack C. Davis Observatory Director Thomas Herring. “Our staff will have several telescopes available for viewing and fun facts about the Moon and eclipses.”

Doors to the observatory will open at 5:30 p.m. and the penumbral eclipse will start at 6:36. The partial eclipse will begin at 7:33 p.m. and reach totality at 8:41. Maximum eclipse occurs at 9:12 p.m. and the total eclipse ends at 9:43. The outgoing partial eclipse will last until 10:50 p.m. and the penumbra shadow will pass off of the Moon at 11:48.


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