CHOOSING A CAREER / JAN. 10, 2015
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How to Become a Textile Laboratory Technician in the US

If you aspire to become a laboratory technician, you can choose to work in healthcare, educational or industrial settings. Textile laboratory technicians are such type of laboratory techs who work in industrial settings, specifically the textile processing industry. Keep reading to learn about the requirements for joining this career.

What Do Textile Laboratory Technologists Do?

The duties of these laboratory technicians include:

  • Conducting experiments to check the quality of diminished textile products, such as carpets
  • Harvesting samples from the production line to test the effectiveness of production processes
  • Providing technical laboratory support to textile scientists, textile chemists and other professionals during product research and development
  • Analyzing the chemical levels of new products
  • Placing orders for laboratory supplies and maintaining equipment.

Work Environment

Textile laboratory technicians work from 9am to 5pm, Monday through Friday. They spend their work day in laboratories, which are typically located within the textile processing plants.

While at work, these laboratory techs wear gloves and other types of protective clothes, because their job involves testing products that contain corrosive chemicals.

Salary

What is the average annual salary for textile laboratory technicians? Find out below:

Occupation

Annual wage

Textile laboratory technician

$32,000

Source: Indeed

Entry Requirements

To qualify for employment as a laboratory technician, you need to earn a bachelor’s degree in textile science or technology. These programs enhance graduates’ understanding of fiber materials and the science behind textile processing.

Some of the universities offering degree in these fields include:

Some graduates with a degree in textile chemistry can also find work as textile laboratory technicians, often as they wait for textile chemist vacancies to occur.

Important Qualities

To do the role of a textile laboratory technician successfully, you need:

  • Excellent technical and practical skills
  • An interest in science
  • The ability to pay close attention to details
  • Good observation skills and a strong eye for color
  • Ability to follow written instruction closely
  • Good analytical skills
  • Good research skills
  • Good teamwork skills
  • Good math skills
  • Good communication skills.

Career Development

Textile laboratory technicians have strong career advancement prospects. You must, however, engage in professional development activities to fast-track your progression. As such, consider the following options:

As you gain vast work experience, you can progress to become a senior laboratory technician. With a master’s degree, you can be hired as a textile technologist. An engineering degree will enable you to move into textile engineering where you can develop new textile products.

Job Opportunities

The employers of textile laboratory technicians include:

  • Textile manufacturing firms
  • Research and development companies
  • Colleges and universities that offer textile courses
  • Testing laboratories.

Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics doesn’t provide occupational data for textile laboratory technicians, it reports a 9 percent job growth for all chemical technicians from 2012 through 2022. Plenty of job opportunities will be available in scientific research and development companies.

So, if you want to influence the quality of textile products while safeguarding the environment, perhaps you should become a textile laboratory technician. 

Image: University of Kentucky

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