Laser Technician Job Description, Career as a Laser Technician, Salary, Employment
Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job
Education and Training Associate’s degree
Average Salary $44,000 a year
Job Outlook Very good
Basic Job Description
Due to recent technological advancements, there are plenty of opportunities for careers in laser technology. Laser technicians can work in a variety of fields including aerospace, alternative energy, telecommunications, or even medicine and cosmetic industries. The job of a laser technician is to assemble, test and operate systems that perform tasks with lasers. Some laser technicians will work with equipment being designed to work with lasers, testing it for safety requirements and standard performance measures. Others work in production, following guidelines and blueprints designed by engineers to build laser equipment that will perform various tasks. Others work in installation, where they will install laser systems for various companies that are implementing the use of laser technology into their workforce. Many laser technicians have begun working more in the medical field, creating lasers that perform blade-free surgeries or perform cosmetic procedures without the use of harsh chemicals.
Education and Training Requirements
To get a job in laser technology, a minimum of an Associate’s degree in electric technology or laser technology is required. Some states require that anyone working or operating machinery that uses lasers must take a state administered test to become certified, but due to the fact that laser technology is relatively new, many applicants can apply for jobs after some schooling in the field.
Most companies who hire laser technicians will provide on the job training courses to make sure each employee understands how to operate specific machinery. Most companies have specific procedures that go into their operations, so it may not be necessary to have more than the basic education requirements to land a job working in laser technology.
Due to recent advancements, some colleges and universities are starting to offer classes and laboratory sessions that focus specifically on the use of laser technology. More schools will begin to offer these courses over time, so before long, companies hiring laser technicians will require them to have a degree specifically in laser technology.
Laser technologists who plan to work in the medical or cosmetic field will also need to meet education requirements for those fields as well. Many optic and cosmetic surgeons are beginning to use lasers in their procedures, so a laser technician will also be needed to create and improve lasers so they are safe to use on humans.
Getting the Job
In order to get a job as a laser technician, an employee must meet the minimum education and/or certification requirements. A technician must be educated in a wide variety of science and engineering fields including physics, electronics, and mechanics. Laser technicians need to be well versed in the principles and concepts of electronic circuits, and will be able to effectively write reports that discuss solutions and possible advancements in electrical engineering practices that can be done with the use of laser technology.
Job Prospects, Employment Outlook and Career Development
Laser technicians often start off working in the development field of laser technology, helping to assemble laser machinery in factories or working in a solution and repair department. After some time and experience, laser technicians can move up in a company and work toward advancing laser machinery and develop new ways to incorporate lasers into different types of fields.
Employment in the laser technology field is rapidly growing due to the constant increase in the use of lasers in various mechanical aspects. Lasers are even being used in the medical and cosmetic industries. Due to the high demand for laser technology in all sorts of fields, there is plenty of room for career advancement for someone who wants to work with lasers and engineering.
Working Conditions and Environment
Laser technicians often work in a factory or laboratory setting that involves heavy machinery or dangerous laser beams or light forms. Factory plants can be potentially dangerous as the use of heavy machinery or beams of light are involved, so it is important for all employees to be trained and educated on standard procedures that are to be followed when working with machines or lasers.
Laser technicians who work in factories or even in laboratories often have safety precautions that must be followed, such as wearing protective eyewear, coats and gloves. Depending on the type of light or lasers being used, some engineers may have to cover up all exposed skin to prevent injury. Every person working in this field must understand the importance of safety and how to operate equipment at all times.
Salary and Benefits
The average starting salary for a laser technician is approximately $44,000. This number can vary greatly according to the education, experience and field of work a laser technologist chooses to perform. Laser technologists who work as engineers in developing new software and purposes for lasers can make up to $80,000 a year, while laser technicians working in the medical field can make close to $60,000 a year. Salaries vary according to field, and with the growing demand for laser technology, are only going to increase over time.
Many laser technicians and engineers work for large companies or even government organizations, so their job comes with a secure benefits package including medical, dental and vision insurance, as well as a 401K plan and vacation and sick time.
Many laser technicians find the biggest perk to their job to be the fact that they are always working to develop new technology and improve the life of many people through the advancements they are helping to create.
Where to Go for More Information
Laser Institute of America
13501 Ingenuity Drive, Suite 128
Orlando, FL 32826
Laser Technology, Inc.
7070 S. Tucson Way
Centennial, CO 80112
1055 West Germantown Pike
Norristown, PA 19403
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