UC Clermont Student Finds Success in Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program
Alex Komala's industry experience and hands-on skills acquired through the college's Manufacturing Engineering Technology program leave him poised for success.
For Alex Komala, a student in UC Clermont College's Manufacturing Engineering Technology program, the second time was the charm.
Komala first started his academic journey as a pre-engineering student at the college in 2009, but when he was presented with a full-time job in manufacturing, he jumped at the chance — and found a new path to a degree.
"I was given the opportunity to go into a tool and die-maker apprenticeship program," Komala says. "I started out running a machine, then got into the making and fixturing of the products, and finally transferred into new product development."
His employer also offered to pay for his schooling, and Komala "really wanted to go back to school." He re-enrolled part time at UC Clermont, this time focused on designing products through the college's computer-aided drafting (CAD) program, which soon morphed into the current Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program.
When Komala returned to campus, he found that his original reasons for choosing UC Clermont remained true.
"It was close to home, smaller and down to earth," the Loveland resident says. But he also found benefits unique to his program. "I really like the hands-on experience we get in manufacturing engineering," Komala says. "There's a strong real-world aspect to the program, and it lines up with what actually happens in the field."
As a full-time working student, Komala also has appreciated the flexibility of the program and his instructors in accommodating his work schedule while helping him stay on track for graduation.
"Instructors Chris Goodman and Dexter Hulse have been great examples and mentors," Komala says. "I've had one of them for almost every manufacturing class, and they have been great about working around my schedule to help me get the classes I need."
Thanks to their guidance, Komala is set to graduate with his associate's degree this summer and plans to stay in the engineering field, helping to design and oversee projects. He credits both the Manufacturing Engineering Technology Program — and on-the-job experience — with his bright future prospects.
"I've put in the hours and the hard work," Komala says. "You've got to start somewhere, and the right experience is key to becoming successful."