MEET THE PRO: Jimmy Dikeman, CNC Machinist

By Arkansas Next on Monday, October 25, 2021

Jacob Slaton

Hometown: Paris
Age: 18

Where I trained: Arkansas Tech University–Ozark

What I earned: OSHA certification and apprenticeship at ABB Motors & Mechanical Inc.

Job title: Machining operator
Employer: ABB Motors & Mechanical Inc.

Jimmy Dikeman enjoys machining because of the before-and-after process of building parts of different types and sizes for motors. It takes a lot of work to make the parts precisely and accurately. He likes the process of learning all of the necessary information for building a part and then being able to turn that knowledge into a tangible product.

Jimmy says he was just in the right place at the right time to be offered this job, and it turned out to be something he enjoys. He loves having a steady and dependable job with an excellent income. He loves that he is continually learning and growing as a machinist while gaining experience.

“I have been able to be in a ‘real world’ situation to better myself with experience; continually learning and having the ability to have a financial income and support myself.” – Jimmy


Machinists set up and operate a variety of machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments out of metal, including precision instrument makers who fabricate, modify or repair mechanical instruments.


  • Operate a variety of machine tools
  • Produce precision metal parts and instruments
  • Adjust machines to control speed and path of cut
  • Fabricate, modify or repair mechanical instruments and machine tools
  • Maintain machines

Education needed: On-the-job training

Jacob Slaton

Job Outlook

+8% expected growth by 2028 in Arkansas

3,090 jobs by 2028 in Arkansas

330 average annual job openings in Arkansas

This option is for you if

  • You have good dexterity
  • You don’t mind a little math
  • You’re dependable
  • You like to be precise
  • You like to learn

High-end earners (top 10%) make

Median wages in Arkansas
$41,670 Annual
$20.03 Hourly

• Arkansas Northeastern College
• Arkansas State University–Beebe
• Arkansas State University–Mid South
• Arkansas State University–Mountain Home
• Arkansas State University–Newport
• Arkansas Tech University–Ozark
• Black River Technical College
• Business & Industry Training
• East Arkansas Community College
• Lexicon Inc.
• National Park College
• Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas
• Simmons Foods
• Southern Arkansas University Tech
• UAM College of Technology–Crossett
• University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
• University of Arkansas Hope–Texarkana
• University of Arkansas–Pulaski Technical College

• ABB Motors & Mechanical Inc.
• Central Moloney Inc.
• Hytrol
• Lexicon Inc.
• Pace Industries
• Simmons Foods
• Welsco

Sources: and