Welding students in the SCILL Center’s vocational welding program will soon be traveling from the classroom to internship programs, as several of the students will begin their internships at local businesses within the next week. Director Jerry Gurrado said that he wasn’t expecting any of the students to take any kind of certification test until around April, but he has already seen three high school students obtain their first certification.
The vocational welding program currently has 16 students enrolled, and about a dozen of them will begin their internships soon. Gurrado said not every student is cut out for the internship program, as work ethic and maturity is taken into account, but he expects several more students will shape up to begin their internships as well.
Gurrado said the internship program is an important part of the teaching process, allowing students the opportunity to get an idea of the real-world applications of welding.
“This way, our interns won’t necessarily be hands-on welding, but they will be in welding shops or companies that do a great deal of welding. They’ll be exposed to it, for what it’s like to do it as a job versus taking a class. It’s about as hands-on as we can possibly get,” said Gurrado.
The internships will take place near the students’ homes; some will take place in Plymouth, others in Culver or Knox, at welding shops like Sabre Manufacturing or mom-and-pop operations that perform specialty welding work.
Gurrado said that don’t have any statistics yet as far as course completion or total certifications received by the students, but he will have those numbers toward the end of the course.