Training program boosts workers’ welding skills

December 17th, 2014

News Coverage:

Training program boosts workers’ welding skills

Posted: Tuesday, December 16, 2014 11:00 pm | Updated: 7:04 am, Wed Dec 17, 2014.

KPC News Service

KENDALLVILLE — A handful of Noble County employees have begun receiving welding training through a program that will lead to industry certification.

Ten workers from five Noble County businesses are enrolled in the intermediate welding training class, which is a joint effort of Northeast Indiana Works, the Impact Institute, the Freedom Academy and the Noble County Economic Development Corp.

Participants are employed by: Advantage Thermal Services LLC in Kendallville; ETA Engineering Inc. in Avilla; Indiana Phoenix Inc. in Avilla; Quick Tanks Inc. in Kendallville; and WickFab Inc. in Avilla.

Northeast Indiana Works, which provides job skills and high school equivalency programs and operates WorkOne Northeast career centers in an 11-county area, and the Freedom Academy are sharing the cost of the welding training.

The 80-hour training course began Monday at the Impact Institute. It is offered through Northeast Indiana Works’ Skill-Link program that provides customized, certification-based training for qualified employees of businesses in the region. The program is designed to aid companies in filling high-demand skilled positions by boosting the professional development of members of their existing workforces.

In Noble County, the Skill-Link program previously has provided industrial maintenance and computer numerical control training.

A Skill-Link welding training class for beginners is expected to start in January at West Noble High School in Ligonier.

“This latest training is a wonderful example of how entities working together can address the needs of both employees and employers in our county,” Rick Sherck, executive director of the Noble County Economic Development Corp., said in an announcement. “Skilled welders are in great demand, and this program will allow employers to fill crucial positions at no cost to the employers. It also allows employee access to higher-level skills and the potential for higher wages.”

The Noble County EDC is in the midst of creating a manufacturing and education alliance that would attempt to more closely align Noble County schools’ programs with the job skills desired by local employers.

“This program aligns with Freedom Academy’s mission to provide relevant, high-quality workforce development and training for business and industry,” Melissa Carpenter, executive director of the Freedom Academy, said in the same announcement. “Through this partnership, employees in the county are able to secure high-quality credentials, bringing us closer to our long-term goal as a region of increasing the percentage of people with credentials or degrees.”