From welding to philosophy, FRCC has a program for you.

Is a bachelor's degree your goal? Our two-year associate degrees (A.A., A.S.) are guaranteed to transfer to four-year public schools in Colorado.

Need skills? Our technical degrees (A.A.S.) and certificates launch you into a career. Some certificates can be completed in just one semester!

Select a campus to see what programs are offered there.  Click on a program name for required classes, contacts, starting salaries, and more.

Machining Programs & Certificates

Offered at: Boulder County Campus

Our Precision Machining Program and certificates prepare students to meet the critical shortage of skilled machinists. Our state-of-the-art machining school teaches the latest technology and machining skills to enter the manufacturing world and earn a high salaried job.

We offer different avenues for our students to get the machinist training they need:

  • Precision Machining Technology Program: Full-time students enroll in this three-semester machining program to develop highly specialized machining skills and earn college credit. The Precision Machining Technology Certificate is earned with successful completion of both the Manual Machining and CNC Machining certificates (see details below).
  • Fast-Track Machining Training: Part-time students can take machinist classes at night (not for credit) to acquire foundational machining knowledge and skills that they will develop on-the-job.

“They prepared us extremely well. I got a job in machining very quickly after starting the program. It’s all direct experience and learning techniques. Every professor there works in the field and has for some time so everything you’re learning is from real-world experience. Textbooks are useful, too, but there’s not much sitting behind a desk.”

- Eric van der Heide, Machining Graduate

Earn a Machining Certificate in as little as 15 Weeks

Certificates are earned sequentially, beginning with the Manual Machining Certificate and followed by the CNC Machining certificate. Each certificate in our machining school is designed to prepare students for a job in the industry at the end of the semester.

Machining Certificates

Manual Machining

16 credits
(1 semester)
Fall or Spring

This manual machining program offers training in safety procedures, bench tools, layout tools, power equipment, precision measurement, and hand tools. Students will learn to read blueprints, as well as interpret symbols, notes dimensions, and tolerances. They will be introduced to basic lathe and milling applications.

CNC Machining

18 credits
(2 semesters)

The CNC machining program trains students in computer numerical control (CNC) lathe operations and CNC milling operations. Students gain exposure to computer-aided design/computer-aided machining (CAD/CAM) for 2-axis machining, 3-axis wireframe and surface modeling, lathe programming, and direct numerical control (DNC) systems.

CNC Machining certificate: See required courses and descriptions.

Precision Machining Technology

34 credits
(3 semesters)

This precision machining certificate is earned with successful completion of the two certificates listed above: Manual Machining and CNC Machining. Students also learn proficiencies in metrology.

Precision Machining Technology certificate: See courses and descriptions.


What Can I Do with a Machining Certification?

Colorado companies have more high-salaried jobs for qualified machinists than they can readily fill. As a skilled machinist, you can work for a company serving the thriving aerospace, automotive, medical device or computer industry. You will set up, program and run high-tech machine tools, program parts on CAD/CAM software, figure out the most efficient way to make a part, and work in teams to solve factory and production problems. Later, you could move into management, open your own business, or study to become an engineer.

Machining could be the right career for you if:

  • You like working with your hands
  • You have the ability to think in three-dimensions
  • You want great pay to support yourself and your family
  • You enjoy creating things
  • You like solving problems

What You Will Learn

Upon completion of the Machining program you will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate safe, precise and efficient programming, set up, and operation of Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machine tools and manual machine tools.
  2. Apply industry standard implementation of quality measurement and inspection techniques.
  3. Design efficient parts and programs using an industry accepted Computer-Aided Design/Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAD/CAM) application.
  4. Read and interpret technical prints, dimensions and tolerances.
  5. Apply critical thinking and problem solving skills to make correct and timely operational and quality control decisions.
  6. Demonstrate professionalism skills necessary to be successful on the job.
  7. Effectively communicate to build collaborative relationships with supervisors and colleagues. 


Machinist Annual Salary

Jobs Entry Average Experienced
Precision Machinist $33,480 $47,109 $53,924

Colorado Department of Labor and Employment
Occupational Statistics Survey (2021)

Center for Integrated Manufacturing

Our Precision Machining program is offered exclusively at FRCC’s new, state-of-the-art Center for Integrated Manufacturing, located in Longmont, Colorado, near our Boulder County Campus.


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