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HCC Breaks Ground for New Welding Building

Henderson Community College is beginning construction on a new welding building on its Henderson Campus. The Groundbreaking Ceremony took place Tuesday, February 10 in the main lobby of the Sullivan Technology Center (STC). The new welding facility will increase the numbers of students served and allow the college to pursue becoming an American Welding Society (AWS) Accredited Test Facility. The welding building will open around Labor Day, 2015.

The new welding building is a $1.4 million project with 20 welding stations and a technology-enabled classroom. The new facility replaces an older 12-station setting in downtown Henderson. The new building and larger number of welding booths available will increase credit, non-credit and corporate training opportunities. The location on campus will make it easier for students/apprentices to attend welding and blueprint reading classes, allowing access to other classes scheduled around the welding classes. We know that welding is a skill needed in our region to support existing and future industry. We are thrilled to be able to expand class offerings and access to technology through this new building on the Henderson campus, stated HCC President Kris Williams.

HCC includes welding in its Industrial Maintenance Technology program (Associate of Applied Science Degree) as an option for students. HCC provides welding certificates in the following areas: ARC Welder; AWS National Skills Standard Level I; Gas Metal Arc Welder; Gas Tungsten Arc Welder; Production Line Welder; Shielded Metal Arc Welder; and Tack Welder. The certificates include math, reading, and blueprint reading skills. More can be found on HCC s welding program page at HCC also provides non-credit training in welding skills for local employers through its Workforce Solutions department.

In GRADD s recent Occupational Outlook to 2018, welding was 20th on the list of Green River Area Occupations with Most Annual Job Openings. Current jobs were noted at 995 with 1,037 predicted for 2018, with annual openings of 31 jobs per year. This is just welders not for positions such as maintenance mechanic that would need welding and blueprint reading knowledge. The average wage for welders per hour in 2010 was $16.11. In the Kentucky Occupational Outlook to 2020, authored by the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet, welding is projected to have 300 openings per year with an average annual income of roughly $32,320.