Learn About Manufacturing Pathways: Facilities, Equipment, and Machine Maintenance

Boeing Workforce Development hosted several virtual “Manufacturing Lunch and Learns” this fall for students and instructors at all partner programs, including Core Plus Aerospace. We got a chance to sit in and are excited to share a recording and some notes from the series!

Boeing employees in the Facilities, Equipment, and Machine Maintenance field recently spoke to students about their career journeys and how to prepare for a manufacturing career.

Christina Rustik, a senior skill team leader in Equipment Services, grew up with an interest in helping with projects around the house. After graduating from Lindbergh High School in Renton, Rustik received an engineering degree from the University of Washington. Rustik completed a Boeing engineering internship, then began a career at Boeing as a Facilities Engineer. Rustik now oversees hiring and staffing for the Facilities critical skills across the Puget Sound and is the leader for the Facilities Manufacturing internship.

John Davis, a building and grounds manager, started his career over 20 years ago in maintenance utility. A job as a gas station attendant in high school introduced him to the mechanical field. Davis’s team works on preventative maintenance, keeping the buildings running, and ensuring that building environments have the proper humidity and temperature.

Davis emphasized the family-wage job opportunities in the manufacturing industry, and the multitude of options available with additional post-high school training. For example, community and technical college programs can build on students’ skills to prepare them for manufacturing careers at companies like Boeing.

What skills are necessary for success in facilities, equipment, and machine maintenance?  

Skills necessary to be successful in the facilities, equipment, and machine maintenance fields include troubleshooting as well as critical thinking as it applies to maintenance and the ability to connect skill areas such as hydraulics, pneumatics, electrical wiring, mechanical functions, electronics, robotics, and programmable logic controls. Other important skills include strong mechanical and/or electrical hands-on aptitude, willingness to work, showing up on time every day, and maintaining a positive attitude.

Advice for students

Panelists encouraged students to see the value in entry-level retail jobs, such as customer service. Davis also encouraged students to research and apply for Boeing internships while in high school or college.

“We’re trying to find the next generation to do the really important work to allow airplanes to be built,” Rustik said.

A recording is available here.