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University of California Santa Cruz
  • Position Number: 4964411
  • Location: Santa Cruz, CA
  • Position Type: Facilities Management

Sign Maker Specialist

Location: Santa Cruz
Job ID: 63799



For full consideration, applicants should attach their resume and cover letter when applying for a job opening. For guidance related to the application process or if you are experiencing difficulties when applying, please review the Applicant Resources on our Talent Acquisition website.


Application materials submitted by 11:59 pm on the IRD will be routed to the hiring unit for consideration. Materials submitted after the IRD will ONLY be forwarded at the request of the hiring unit. To ensure your application is routed for consideration, submit your materials before 11:59 p.m. on the IRD. Talent Acquisition cannot accept application materials outside of the jobs portal, and is unable to update submitted applications on an applicant's behalf, or forward communications to the hiring units. For more information about the IRD and the applicant review process, view this link.

The IRD for this job is: 03-06-2024


UC Santa Cruz is a public university like no other in California, combining the experience of a small, liberal arts college with the depth and rigor of a major research university. It's known as an unconventional place where innovation and experimentation is part of the campus's DNA. That playful, bold spirit still thrives today, all on a campus renowned as among the most beautiful in the world.


Physical Planning, Development & Operations (PPDO) manages and oversees all University activities and services related to physical and environmental planning, design and construction, engineering, physical plant maintenance and operations, capital planning and space management, and the associated business services necessary to support these functions. The University's main campus is spread across more than 2,000 acres and includes over 500 buildings comprising more than 8 million square feet. The department includes operating budgets of over $54 million, manages a project portfolio of approximately $950 million, and employs over 370 full-time staff to carry forth the duties necessary for the campus' development and operation.

More information can be found at:


Under the direction of the Structural Trades Superintendent, the Signmaker Specialist performs journey-level sign design, making, and sign equipment maintenance duties in the sign shop. Daily duties include all aspects of campus sign systems management, including graphic design, estimates, fabrication, and installation of signage. The Signmaker Specialist works from schematics, blueprints, drawings, and verbal and written instructions. The incumbent utilizes Windows, Graphics Advantage (GA), and Apple Operating Systems as well as hardware, software, and networking of the shop's two Windows/GA-based systems, including the two Pentium CPUs, and the four specialized GSP Plotters (HS 15 Plus, SMIVB, Dimension 200, & the Edge Thermal Transfer Printer), and the current Apple-based communication link to campus or equivalent. Tasks requiring specialized computer skills include plot-file creation, editing and outputting, image file conversion, and printing using multiple applications for manipulation. Writing and utilizing procedure manuals and schematics. Lays out temporary signs according to established schedules. Fabricates temporary and permanent wood signs using carpentry-related power tools (including table saws, band saws, saber saws, belt sanders, edge sanders, routers, and electric drill presses) and hand tools standard to the trade (such as hammers, hand saws, wrenches, squares, levels, etc.). Serving as the front-line contact between the campus community and the University's offices of the Physical Plant and Physical Planning & Construction in matters of signs and displays, the incumbent must be able to communicate effectively with a diverse group of customers. Utilizing the campus sign standard manual, the Signmaker Specialist designs and produces jobs for staff, faculty, and students, often requiring architectural approvals and working under severe time constraints.


Budgeted Salary: $51.30/ hour. Salary rate will increase to $57.01/hour when the 6 month probation is passed. Salary commensurate with skills, qualifications and experience.
Under California law, the University of California, Santa Cruz is required to post a reasonable estimate of the compensation for this role. The salary shown above is the budgeted amount the University reasonably expects to pay and the salary extended should not exceed this posted amount.

Benefits Level Eligibility: Full benefits

Schedule Information:
  • Full-time, Fixed
  • Percentage of Time: 100%, 40 Hours per Week
  • Days of the Week: Mon-Fri
  • Shift Includes: Day

Employee Classification: Career appointment

Job End Date: None

Work Location: UC Santa Cruz Main Campus

Union Representation: K7, Santa Cruz Skilled Craft

Job Code Classification: SIGN MAKER SPEC (008388)

Travel: Up to 25% of the time


70% - Sign Design and Fabrication
  • Performs specialized tasks in the fabrication of a new Campus signage system. Must be proficient in the use of both MIG and TIG welding and proficient in general tasks in the creation of wood, plastic and metal signs. Utilizing extensive specialized computer training and basic mathematical calculations, operates the Windows-GA signs systems. Create CAD drawings in design of new sign systems for both internal use and for use by outside vendors to create tooling and sign components. Performs and uses specialized software (such as Gerber Autocarve) to optimize CNC router capabilities. Also, designs and outputs signs utilizing highly specialized graphics software, including Gerber Scientific's Composer and Art Path programs. Using other graphics software programs (including Adobe Illustrator, Corel Photo Paint, Fractal Design's Painter and Expressions programs and the GA file converter) and the color flatbed scanner, manipulates and edits image files to import into plot-files for printing on the thermal transfer printer. Working closely with the campus architects and the campus ADA compliance officer, designs and produces architectural ADA signage on the computer driven router/engraver system for new facilities, as well as the ongoing campus-wide ADA signage upgrade.

10% - Sign Shop Administration
  • Writes and maintains monthly and daily work schedules.
  • Plans, coordinates, and schedules indoor & outdoor temporary and permanent signage jobs.
  • Interacts with the campus architects, faculty, and students in the planning of temporary and permanent signage.
  • Working from architectural drawings and sketches as well as oral and written instructions provides verbal and written estimates.
  • Writes material orders for jobs and maintains an inventory of shop materials, supplies and tools.
  • Maintains job data for campus signage including dates, department, building, sign size, materials, fonts, etc.
  • Closes work orders by tracking time and materials on each job.
  • Maintains a filing system for closed work orders and material orders.
  • Trains building maintenance workers as assistants. Assists supervisor in the development, scheduling, and tracking of the sign shop's preventative maintenance program.
  • Performs safety inspections and routine maintenance on tools and equipment used. Attends safety and training classes and performs job-related tasks in a safe manner.
  • Follows all product and University-specific safety procedures when using tools and equipment.
  • Writes and maintains a weekly timesheet.
  • Effectively employs good interpersonal skills when interacting with members of the campus community.
  • Helps Physical Plant mechanics and supervisor maintain an inventory of shop materials, supplies, and tools by informing them of specific needs.

10% - Sign Installation
  • Using shovels, post-hole diggers, digging bars, saws, levels, hammers, and roto-hammers.
  • Digs post holes, installs and maintains traffic and directional signs, and installs letters on campus buildings.
  • Drives a University vehicle to various areas on campus.

5% - General Maintenance & Upgrades
  • General maintenance & upgrades of sign fabrication systems including hardware and software installation, as well as the weekly maintenance of all highly specialized electronic sign-making instruments in use.

5% - Sign Painting
  • Using air-operated (conventional) spray guns, rollers, standard paintbrushes, artist paintbrushes, cans, sprays, water & oil-based paints, and solvents, primes and paints temporary and permanent sign backgrounds.

  • Knowledge and experience equivalent to completion of apprenticeship as a sign maker.
  • Knowledge and experience with Microsoft Windows and Apple Operating Systems and specialized graphic software systems.
  • Ability to learn and use new software and hardware systems and upgrades when necessary.
  • Knowledge of the use, mechanics and maintenance of specialized sign making equipment including computer driven routers-engravers, plastic saws and the Edge thermal transfer printer.
  • Knowledge of the safe basic use of carpentry power and hand tools.
  • Ability to read, write and perform basic mathematical computations; ability to proofread work.
  • Ability to read architectural drawings, plans and sketches.
  • Ability to read, translate and convert architectural software files (i.e. Auto CAD and postscript files).
  • Knowledge of basic use and mechanics of painting equipment, including spray guns, pressure pots, etc.
  • Ability to learn Enterprise Asset Management System Software (FAMIS) work order tracking program, UCSC electronic purchasing tools.

  • Experience in working in busy, occupied buildings, offices and labs without disturbing occupants.

  • Selected candidate will be required to pass a pre-employment criminal history background check.
  • Must possess a valid license to drive in the state of California.
  • Ability to bend, stoop, reach, kneel, and frequently lift equipment and materials. This requires the ability to exercise judgment in obtaining assistance or moving equipment when necessary.
  • Ability to climb stairs & ladders as access to locations may be by stairs or ladders.
  • Ability to respond to emergencies after hours as necessary.
  • Ability to work overtime including evenings, nights, weekends and holidays to meet operational needs, and work an alternate work schedule shift as required.
  • Selected candidate will be required to complete training within established time frames as directed including UC compliance training.
  • The University of California has implemented a Vaccination Policy covering all employees. Employees, including new hires, are required to comply with any applicable policies relating to the University of California vaccine program.
  • Per the Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Act (CANRA), this position has been identified as a Mandated Reporter. The selected candidate will be required to report known or suspected child abuse or neglect as defined by CANRA and will be required to sign a Statement Acknowledging Requirement to Report Child Abuse prior to commencing employment. CANRA Penal Codes, and related definitions, requirements, and responsibilities may be obtained here.


All UCSC employees must understand and follow job safety procedures, attend required health and safety training, proactively promote safety at work, and promptly report actual and potential accidents and injuries.


The University of California is an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees.

View full job description and access on-line application:

To ensure review of application materials by the hiring unit, they must be submitted on or before the initial review date (IRD) via the Staff Employment Opportunities web site; A computer is available at the UC Santa Cruz Staff Human Resources Office located at Scotts Valley Center. The Scotts Valley Center is located at 100 Enterprise Way, Suite E100, Scotts Valley, CA 95066. To learn more or to request disability accommodations, call 831-459-2009. Hearing impaired are encouraged to use the California Relay Service at 800-735-2922. UC Santa Cruz is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, or protected veteran status. UC Santa Cruz is committed to excellence through diversity and strives to establish a climate that welcomes, celebrates, and promotes respect for the contributions of all students and employees.

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