A student works on a CNC machine

CNC Technician - Technical Diploma

As a computer numerical control technician/programmer operator, you play an important role in today's modern manufacturing environments. You set up and operate computer numerical controlled machine tools, working from blueprints and set-up sheets. You set up fixturing and tooling, produce and inspect parts, and edit CNC programs on CNC lathes and machining centers. As a graduate of the CNC Technician program, you're also prepared for a career as a jig and fixture apprentice/trainee, or a manufacturing engineering technician. With additional education and/or work experience, you may become a journey level machinist, pattern maker, mold maker, tool and die maker, CNC programmer, or machine shop foreperson/supervisor.

Program Code: 324441
Home » Academics and Training » CNC Technician
Area of Study: Manufacturing

Program Costs & Financial Aid

See costs of tuition, books, and supplies.

This program is partially eligible for financial aid.

Estimates based on in-state residency. Learn more about tuition and fees.

Explore Locations

Offered At:

Follow Your Path

All credits from the following technical diploma apply toward this program:

CNC Machinist, 314201


  • Day
  • Full-time
  • Part-time

How do I get started in this program?

Requirements for Program Entry

  • Apply at www.nwtc.edu/apply.
  • Submit the following to transcripts@nwtc.edu: High school transcript (or GED/HSED transcript) College transcript
  • If your cumulative GPA is below 2.6, complete or submit a placement evaluation.
  • Tip! Our admission advisors will assist you through every step. Have questions? Connect with NWTC Admissions at start@nwtc.edu or 920-498-5444.

What are my courses?


Students following the study plan will complete the CNC Technician technical diploma in the number of semesters shown.

Total Credits 62
  • Curriculum Note: Students must earn a "C" or better in 10-804-301, Vocational Math A to enroll in 10-804-302, Vocational Math B.

Program Outcomes

  • Apply basic safety practices in the machine shop.
  • Interpret industrial/engineering drawings.
  • Apply precision measuring methods to part inspection.
  • Perform basic machine tool equipment set-up and operation.
  • Perform programming, set-up and operation of CNC machine tools.
  • Perform advanced CNC machining operations.

What careers are in my future?


Graduate Employment

with 100% in field


Median Starting Salary

Source: NWTC Graduate Outcome Survey

Employment Potential

A graduate of the program will have the potential for employment in the following areas:

  • Computer Numerical Control (CNC) Technician/ Programmer Operator: sets up and operates computer numerical controlled machine tools working from blueprints and set-up sheets; sets up fixturing and tooling; produces and inspects parts; and edits CNC programs on CNC lathes and machining centers.
  • Jig and Fixture Apprentice/Trainee: lays out, fits, and assembles parts to make and repair cutting tools, jigs, fixtures, gauges, or machinist’s hand tools by analyzing specifications.
  • Machinist Apprentice/Trainee: sets up and operates a variety of machine tools; and fits and assembles parts to fabricate or repair machine tools and to maintain industrial machines.
  • Manufacturing Engineering Technician: supports production in a CNC machining environment.

Employment opportunities with additional education

  • Journey Level Machinist
  • Pattern Maker
  • Mold Maker
  • Tool and Die Maker
  • CNC Programmer
  • Machine Shop Foreperson/Supervisor

What else do I need to know about the program?

Study Abroad Opportunities

The International Programs staff continually seeks opportunities for students to travel abroad for educational experiences that may be offered in association with program courses.

Learn more about upcoming study abroad opportunities.

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Classes wherever you have an internet connection. 

  • An in-person career experience, such as an internship, practicum, or credit for prior learning, may be required.
  • Some online courses may be held at specific dates/times.
Classes between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.
Classes between the hours of 5:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
A combination of online classes and Saturday and/or Sunday classes.
12 or more credits per term.
Fewer than 12 credits per term.