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Texas A&M students enhance engineering education through hands-on training at TSTC – Brownsville Herald

HARLINGEN — The 2022 summer session at Texas State Technical College has been rewarding for three Texas A&M University engineering seniors who are receiving hands-on training at TSTC.
Hector Guzman, Eric Martin and Jesus Perez are enrolled in the Mechatronics Technology program at TSTC’s Harlingen campus through their university’s Bachelor’s+ Program, a professional education partnership between the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) and TSTC.
Guzman, of College Station, is a mechanical engineering student. He said the Mechatronics Technology program is intriguing because many of the items they tinker with can be found at home.
“I am familiarizing myself with all this information so it benefits me in the long run,” Guzman said.
Guzman said TSTC Mechatronics Technology instructor Mario Castillo has made his experience engaging.
“(He) is caring when it comes to a student’s learning capability,” he said. “With his teaching approach, you learn what goes where, and why do this and not that. The transition of learning theory at Texas A&M University and then here at TSTC has been fulfilling.”
Perez, of Houston, is an electrical engineering student. He said the program is beneficial because it helps students be able to analyze various components.
“I enjoy how it makes us think in a perspective similar to that of engineers,” Perez said.
Perez recalled that his favorite hands-on assignment involved motor control systems.
“It keeps you going because you learn about different parts for different systems,” he said.
Martin, of Kerrville, is a mechanical engineering student who said his experience at TSTC has been phenomenal.
“This education is entirely different from computer simulations or doing it on paper,” Martin said. “I really enjoy the step-by-step process of the work visually.”
Martin said his favorite hands-on assignment was the wiring component.
“We wired a PLC (programmable logic controller) system with wires and buttons from scratch,” he said. “It is stimulating to see how it works with ladder logic diagrams and to make buttons and switches work.”
Each of the students will earn a Basic Electromechanical Automation occupational skills achievement award from TSTC in August.
TSTC offers Mechatronics Technology at the Harlingen campus, where students can earn an Associate of Applied Science degree or an occupational skills achievement award.
The Bachelor’s+ Program fulfills the Texas A&M students’ ENGR(x) zero-credit-hour requirement for graduation. To meet the requirement, the engineering students must participate in an approved engineering-centric activity that meets the criteria of a high-impact learning experience, followed by meaningful self-reflection.
For more information on the Bachelor’s+ Program, go to tx.ag/bachelorsplus2022.
Registration for the fall semester at TSTC is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.


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