If you have been to the eye doctor, then you couldn’t have missed the optical laboratory technicians. Also known as optical mechanics, these are the people you will find working in isolation in the corner with great concentration. The job of an optical laboratory technician is well worth the pay, given the massive amount of focus and precision they need while working. An optical laboratory technician salary varies according to his/her years of experience. They make good money as on an average an optical laboratory technician’s salary is about $ 10.36 an hour for new graduates. People with more than 5 years of experience however are entitled to a much higher remuneration. They can make as much as $ 18.75 per hour. This however depends greatly on your competence, education, level of responsibility and location of work.
Therefore, on a yearly basis, ranging from freshers to the experienced, an optical laboratory technician salary is between $ 17,839 and $ 41,046. In addition to the pay, lab mechanics also have added health benefits like medical, dental, vision and other benefits. If you are contemplating on becoming an optical mechanic, you first need to know what the job entails. As an optical technician, you are responsible for the following activities:
- Create eyeglass lenses as per prescriptions and fit them into frames
- Use specific machines to cut, grind & polish the lenses according to their requirement.
- Select and mark correct lens blanks according to specifications
- Examine damaged lenses and make a second pair if necessary
- Grind lenses for telescopes and microscopes and much more.
If you are fascinated by this work then you must have outstanding communication skills and you must be able to work well with your hands. Most importantly, since you will be working on your own, you need to be able to depend on your own judgment.
Now that you know what an optical laboratory technicians salary and job is, you need to know about the educational qualifications required to pursue this career path. Well, for starters you need to have a high school diploma or an equivalent. You can then start training by joining the lab as a trainee or you can further your education by joining an optical laboratory technician program which lasts between 12 months and 24 months depending on if you join a certificate course or a degree course. Thus, becoming an optical mechanic isn’t an easy task. As they say, money never comes easy!
Apart from an optical laboratory technician salary, job description and educational qualifications, you must also be wondering about the job market. Well, experts predict that job openings for optical mechanics will be very few in the next few years owing to industries investing in machines to do the job of these technicians. Thus, despite the growing middle – age and senior population seeking vision care, the comparatively small size of this occupation will prevent a massive rise in employment opportunities.
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