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Electrical Trades – Autonomous Equipment Technician

Those with interest should contact Admissions directly for more information. 

Degree Description

The two-semester, 9-month Electrical Trades - Autonomous Equipment Technician certificate program provides in-depth instruction in the skills required to install, commission, and maintain electrical and mechanical systems. The Autonomous Equipment Technician will bridge the gap between basic mechanical systems and advanced Information Technology (IT) systems. Principles of electricity, networking, welding, and mechanical skill will provide a foundation for various autonomous systems.

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Application Process

1. Complete Western Dakota Tech Admissions Application
2. Complete the ACCUPLACER test ($15 fee)
3. Schedule your Admissions Advising Session
4. Provide an official copy of a High School transcript or GED scores. If you graduated from an international high school, you must submit your transcript to Educational Credential Evaluators to determine U.S. equivalence.
5. Submit Immunization Records verifying two doses of MMR vaccinations
6. Once you receive your acceptance letter, schedule a time to register for classes

(The ACCUPLACER test will be waived if you have an ACT sub-score of 18 or better in English, Math, and Reading, or a SAT sub-score of at least 440 in Verbal and Math.  The scores must be within the last five years.)

Please call 605-718-2565 to make an appointment.

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Career Description

Students will study and learn to interpret and apply skills required to keep autonomous technology enabled on various types of job sites. The training will provide students the flexibility to pursue different areas of employment in the autonomous technology industry, from hardware and software implementation and upgrading, to troubleshooting and consulting. Graduates will have the skills to support technology offerings that range from machine health and fleet management software to fully autonomous operations. Potential on-site roles include site manager, application specialist, builder, controller, service technician and site engineer. In addition, graduates will find opportunities to work in remote support centers that provide 24/7 service for technologies. Training includes virtual reality simulation, hands-on learning, welding, mechanical, electronics and autonomous technology training.

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General Education EMT

Meet Your Faculty

Western Dakota Tech has a low student-to-faculty ratio, meaning more one-on-one learning. Individual attention from your professor can make your college experience more fulfilling.


  • Bryan Mitchell

Financial Aid

Continuing your education is crucial and Western Dakota Tech wants to make sure that any student who wants to attend school, has the opportunity to do so. For this reason, WDT is dedicated to administering the U.S. Department of Education’s Title IV Financial Assistance Program fair and consistently to anyone who needs it.

Build Dakota Scholarships

The Build Dakota Scholarship at Western Dakota Tech will pay all your tuition and fees and prepare you for a career that is in-demand and growing in South Dakota. Build Dakota Scholarships will be awarded to students entering high-need workforce programs at South Dakota’s technical institutes to fill the state’s technical careers with skilled professionals.


Student Housing

While Western Dakota Tech does not offer on-campus housing, we understand that finding a place to live within town while you go to school can be difficult. We have a few resources to help prospective students find affordable housing.

Child Care

Finding child care during school is a challenge for many students. Western Dakota Tech currently does not offer on-campus child care, but here are some resources that may help you in your search.

Youth & Family Services is an organization dedicated to helping children in Western South Dakota. They offer a variety of services, including child care at multiple locations.

The Y of Rapid City offers child care and other services.

Disclaimer: Western Dakota Tech provides these links to you only as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply affiliation, endorsement or adoption by Western Dakota Tech of any site or any information contained therein. When you leave wdt.edu, you should be aware that our terms and policies no longer govern. Western Dakota Tech makes no claim or representation regarding, and accepts no responsibility for, the quality, content, nature or reliability of third-party websites or vendors.

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