Skip to content

Heavy Equipment Operation

Architecture and Construction


The Heavy Equipment Operation Program is designed with NCCER (National Center for Construction Education & Research) standards nationally recognized by employers in the construction, earthmoving, and excavation Industries. Students will learn to operate heavy equipment through in-the-seat operation of several types of heavy equipment and through classroom instruction that includes simulators.


Applicants must complete a Southern Tech Application for Admission. Additional information and applications are available at the Southern Tech campus and online at Enrollment for this career major is open to partnering High Schools (juniors/seniors) and Adults.


High School Student: Free. Adult Student (in-district): $2.50 per hour; Adult Student (Out-of-District): $5 per hour; and Adult Student (Out-of-State): $7.50 per hour. Additional costs may include books, supplies, and miscellaneous fees.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Financial aid and scholarships are available for qualifying students.


Heavy Equipment Operation
Construction Core145
NCCER HEO Level 1380
NCCER HEO Level 2240
NCCER HEO Level 3240
Workforce Staging60
Total Hours1050
Estimated time to complete (Full Time)1 year
Estimated time to complete (Half Time)2 years

Targeted Certifications and/or Credentials

NCCER Construction Core
Heavy Equipment Operator
National Career Readiness Certification (NCRC): WorkKeys

Certifications may vary by Program and are subject to change without notice.

Student Organization



Adults (Half Time) 8:00-11:00 AM or 12:45-3:45 PM; Adults (Full Time) 8:00-11:00 AM and 12:45-3:45 PM; High School Students 8:00-11:00 AM or 12:45-3:45 PM

Employment Options

The following list is associated with the approved SOC (Standard Occupational Classification) for this program and does not necessarily represent immediate opportunities; additional training may be required for some options listed.

Back Hoe Operator, Engineering Equipment Operator, Equipment Operator, Heavy Equipment Operator, Loader Operator, Machine Operator, Motor Grader Operator, Operating Engineer, Operator, Track Hoe Operator. – Approximate Pay Potential: $13-38/Hour. (source:



Heavy Equipment Operation Instructor

Student Projects

Top of page