Avionics, technology and electronics arouse the interest of local students, giving them a deeper passion for learning and growth in their education.
Brea Edens, an avionics student, was recently hired by SpaceX to work on the spacecraft.
Edens’ job as an avionics technician will include creating wire harnesses and installing them on all rockets at each different stage.
According to Edens, they are like round domes.
“You start with one and they start to pile up until they’re about 400 feet in the air,” Edens said. “I have learned that I will be working at each of these stations, even the ones 400 feet in the air.”
After graduating from Central High School in 2020, Edens began continuing his education after a visit to the tech center in his sophomore year in high school.
Edens said she took a tour of her sophomore year at the RRTC, and the students were able to sit and play in the various classrooms, seeing what the lessons were for.
“I really like this one, I never thought I would like it, but it was a lot of fun,” Edens said. “I decided I was going to make this my full time, so I made it both my junior and senior year.”
Edens, who is majoring in electronics technology, graduated from the program in his final year of high school and will graduate from Spartan College in June.
According to Edens, they have an agreement with the aviation school at Spartan College in Tulsa for everything she learned at RRTC she received college credit.
“I thought it would be a really good opportunity to be already early in college,” Edens said.
Edens said she liked the aviation side of the program.
“I wanted to be able to fly all the way,” Edens said. “I just thought it was a great opportunity.”
Edens said she will start her job on June 21 in Boca Chica, Texas and is very excited to be able to work in practical situations.
“Being able to work directly with people and engineers,” Edens said. “Normally the engineers are in the background. Here they work with you every step of the way, they want everything to come to life and I’m really excited about that. “
Edens hopes she will become more competent and learn from many engineers here.
“They are extremely smart,” Edens said. “They’re just above the level of intelligence, they’re so amazing out there. It was honestly the best part of when I went to interview with them there, I was so excited. They’re throwing engineers at me here and they’re asking me engineering questions. They really gave me clues to get to where I needed to get the answer. I just thought it was really neat and cool of them.
Edens said that with the program ending and graduating in June, a big part of her determination comes from her motivation.
“It’s largely full motivation,” she said. “You don’t have to have this amazing high school or anything like that. There are a lot of doubts in everything – so I’m definitely saying, “don’t listen to anybody, just have your own motivation and that will really push you through” for what you have to do. “
Edens’ ultimate goal is to become a leader in avionics at SpaceX.
“Now that I’ve reached SpaceX, I just want to keep building there,” Edens said.
Bill Leyrer, an electronics technology instructor at the Red River Technology Center, said students have the opportunity to earn their associate’s degree through the program.
“It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to work with Brea,” said Leyrer. “From the very beginning of Brea’s journey in our electronics technology program, it was evident that she was destined for success.
Leyrer said Brea is a very motivated student.
“(She’s) the first to volunteer, hugely appreciated by her peers and would confidently indicate – well in advance to anyone who listened to her – that one day she would work for SpaceX,” Leyrer said. “Well, the rest, as they say, is history. I hope other young women will be inspired by his accomplishments. Here at Red River Technology Center, we are all very proud of his success and look forward to hearing about his future accomplishments.
Leyrer said the tech center offers classes for high school students, as well as adults.
“We are primarily a two-year program and we are available to high school students as juniors and seniors,” Leyrer said. “We are also open to mature students.
According to Leyrer, students can transfer credits to Spartan College for their associate degree.
“We are the only program in Oklahoma where high school students and adults can transfer credits to Spartan College from our program,” said Leyrer.
Edens said she felt really prepared taking electronics lessons.
“Coming here was really amazing,” said Edens. “Some of the SpaceX interview questions are things I learned here (RRTC) and so I’m definitely saying ‘don’t take this program for granted,’ you can really become something here.”
The Red River Technology Center is located at 3300 W Bois D’Arc Avenue in Duncan.