Rising Star: Michael Sykes

Rising Star: Michael Sykes

NAME: Michael Sykes

SCHOOL: Bluegrass Community & Technical College

AREA OF STUDY: Industrial Maintenance

EMPLOYER: Central Motor Wheel of America


Michael Sykes learned about KYFAME and Bluegrass Community & Technical College (BCTC) through his employer, Central Motor Wheel of America (CMWA). CMWA has an apprenticeship program through which they internally promote individuals who show an aptitude for industrial maintenance. Those chosen are sent through the AMT program in order to gain an associate’s degree.

Sykes was selected for this program due to his aptitude and because they wanted to provide the best technical learning experience for those who interested in industrial maintenance advancement.

The program has provided Sykes hands-on learning opportunities, and the BCTC Georgetown-Scott County Campus has state-of-the-art equipment on which students can apply and hone skills learning in the classroom and on the job.

Sykes is striving to learn all he can about Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC), Robotics and anything to do with automation to move into a Controls Engineering position.

Controls engineering is a multifaceted career with the opportunity to specialize in a number of different areas. A controls engineer is responsible for designing, implementing, troubleshooting and upgrading automation processes. In an industrial setting robots, PLCs and other automation hardware are used to achieve the level of automation required by the facility.

He enjoys working on the manufacturing floor and can’t see himself having a job where he is not working directly on a project in the field. He does have interest in leadership position, such as leading a team of individuals in the field to complete a given project.

Sykes knows he is in the right line of work: “I thoroughly enjoy my work and this career path will provide me with greater financial mobility as well as allow me to find gainful employment almost anywhere in the country.”

He is grateful to BCTC, Central Motor Wheel of America and KYFAME for helping him achieve his career goals through an excellent education in important skills and hands-on experience to successfully apply knowledge in the work environment.

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