Program provides free on-the-job training to motivate welders | Education

Program provides free on-the-job training to motivate welders | Education
Program provides free on-the-job training to motivate welders | Education

A new free job training program aims to get 150 people to start working as welders and help meet the labor requirement

Grand Aire's Workforce Planning Board will provide the program through its Skills2Advance training arm in partnership with the CWB Welding Foundation.  Training will be given by four regional colleges.

"This is a tremendous opportunity for people just starting out in the skilled trades and starting to build their careers with this high-demand business," said Board Executive Director Dennett Dalton in a news release.  “We are excited to be working with the CWB Welding Foundation, area post-secondary schools and other community partners to give people the skills they need to succeed.”

The two-week-long classes begin in June and will be offered regularly next year.  Participants will be recruited from the credits of Brentford, Brent, Haldimand and Norfolk Counties, Six Nations of Grand River, and Mississaugas First Nations.  Residents of Hamilton, Cambridge, Kitchener-Waterloo and Oxford counties can also sign up.

According to the news release, two-thirds of the participants are expected to be women.  Only 10 percent of welders in Grand Erie are women.

There will also be opportunities for people with disabilities, youth and other groups that are under-represented in trades.

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For more information about the program, visit www.skills2advance.com/welding

The CWB Welding Foundation has over the years conducted training programs for welders across Canada.  Its Women of Steel program has trained hundreds of women since 2019, while its Mind over Metal program has been running since 2014. 

The Women in Steel and Mind Over Metal courses will be delivered by instructors at Six Nations Polytechnic, Conestoga College and Fanshawe College's Simco campus using their welding shops.  Mohawk College will provide training in its mobile classroom, which consists of welding simulators in a truck trailer.

The one-year project is funded by the Ontario Ministry of Labor, Training and Skills Development.

This will include 30 hours of practical training with the opportunity to earn CWB Welding certification.  Another 30 hours will focus on training in soft skills such as first aid, CPR, working at forklift and heights, and problem-solving and workplace communication.

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Program participants will receive a free welding toolkit, which includes a welding helmet and will be eligible to receive additional assistance to help cover other expenses, such as work shoes.

When they graduate, participants will be assisted by local employment service agencies, who will work with local businesses to create job offers on the job, which can lead to permanent positions.

"The goal is to find employment for participants, and we expect the program to be warmly received by employers," Dalton said.

“Welders are in demand, and this demand is expected to continue. We need to ensure that new, eager workers are entering the field.”

Dalton noted that welding is often a stepping stone to other careers in skilled trades.

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"Skilled trades provide a wealth of opportunities for people to work in stable, in-demand and very well-paying careers."

The average salary of welders in the Grand Erie area is about $44,000 per year, but some positions pay more than $60,000, according to the Planning Board, which tracks the salaries of postings that appear on their Grand Erie Jobs job board.  

To learn more about CWB Welding Foundation's training programs, watch these videos: Women of Steel: youtu.be/dH5YyMv54gg and Mind Over Metal: youtu.be/Y1cawe84Lb8.

Source: Simcoe Reformer, Direct News 99