The new Northeast Training Facility opens its door to host the first of three Welding Boot Camps. Kneeling l. to r., Jordon Trust and Dominic Nacca. Front row l. to r., L-237 BM-ST Chris O’Neill, Instructor Joel Kipfer, IVP-NE John Fultz, Adam Church, Adam Ziegler and Ryan Hoffman. Middle row l. to r., Jerry Couser, Zeresehay Berhe, Ruark Danforth, Thomas McNeil, Jedediah Robertson, Instructor Daniel Badiali and Jason Dupuis, NEAAC. Back row l. to r., Jonathan Middleton, Chance Gendron, Tom Keegan and David Bastek.
The new Northeast Training Facility opened its doors in July to host the first of three Welding Boot Camp sessions. IVP-NE John Fultz said hosting the boot camp as the first event at the new training center allowed them to test it out and determine its capabilities in action.
The facility passed with flying colors. So did the boot camp students, who completed the session with an impressive 100 percent pass rate.
Welding Boot Camps are a joint venture between Construction Sector Operations, the National Transient Division and the Boilermaker National Apprenticeship Program to produce additional well-trained workers for field construction.
The boot camps are set up like a job site. Students in small class sizes work 10 hours a day, six days a week training. They continuously progress over three weeks, learning test-ready techniques in SMAW and FCAW.
Fultz said that in addition to offering better training than many welding schools, Boilermakers provide training at no cost to students. Fultz spoke with two boot camp participants who were recent graduates of a $30,000 welding school. They told Fultz they learned more at the boot camp than they did at the 10-month welding school.
None of the boot camp participants had any certifications when they arrived. All left with them. Plus, the Northeast gained 17 new recruits and apprentices for the CSO/NTD Mechanic Helper Program.
“Boot camps mean the Boilermakers can man jobs quicker and with more qualified people,” Fultz said.
Hartford, Connecticut Local 237 BM-ST Chris O’Neill agreed the boot camps are good for the union and to “meet the demand for welders. Because more welders mean we create and capture more work hours.”
Joel Kipfer from Local 26 (Savannah, Georgia) was the lead instructor for the camp. L-237’s Daniel Badiali supported Kipfer as a supplemental instructor.
At the conclusion of the three-week boot camp, four Boilermaker contractors visited the new facility to participate in the final testing. Fultz, O’Neill and NEAAC Administrator Jason Dupuis thank the contractors who came to test participants. They were: Marvin Sleith Jr. with Day and Zimmerman; Kevin Brosnan with Fresh Meadow Power; Steve Manchester with Frank Lill and Son; and Chris Pinkham with Mechanical Advantage Contractors.