Date Posted: December 5, 2023
With the growing need for skilled workers continuing to rise, Southern Crescent Technical College (SCTC) has again responded to the call and expanded our training capabilities to include a new state-of-the art Welding Technology Mobile Training Lab. The doors to this impressive lab were officially opened with a recent Ribbon Cutting ceremony held at SCTC’s Jasper County Center.
This mobile lab is outfitted with a variety of welding training equipment including six welding bays with welders for both gas and wire welding as well as one station for robotic welding. Currently housed at the SCTC Jasper County Center serving Dual Enrollment and traditional credit students, this mobile training lab eliminates the traditional boundaries of classroom learning. It will assist SCTC’s credit and non-credit programs in training students in the high-demand career field of Welding and will prove to be critical to the workforce development efforts in SCTC’s service area.
During this event, attendees were welcomed by SCTC President Dr. Irvin Clark where he spoke of the importance of this lab to the local workforce development efforts with specific emphasis on the dual enrollment training that is currently underway with students from Jasper County High School.
Dr. Clark stated, “Our new Mobile Welding Lab stands at the forefront of our workforce development strategy in Jasper County and surrounding areas and will be a vital resource for students to gain practical, real-world welding experience, setting them on a path to excel in high-demand careers. Its mobility plays a crucial role in gaining access to top-quality welding training, reaching students across a range of counties. This initiative is more than just skill development; it’s about filling critical skill gaps in key industries and making a significant impact on both the local and regional workforce.”
With the new lab, SCTC has the ability to support workforce development projects for municipalities, upskill incumbent workers at an employer’s place of work, train job seekers looking to gain new skills, and work with the next generation of trades workers to develop skills and interest. It has the flexibility to be transported or remain in a fixed location to provide an additional training lab for students and industry partners.
Maddie Cantrell, Jasper County High School junior and SCTC Welding Technology Dual Enrollment student, offered a student’s perspective as she shared her excitement over the addition of the mobile lab and how it will make training accessible to more students.
Jasper County School System Superintendent Kenny Garland spoke of the importance of the Welding Technology mobile lab saying, “Throughout the process to bring Welding and this lab to Jasper County, Southern Crescent Technical College has been a true partner in every sense of the word. With this mobile lab, our Dual Enrollment students are able to gain the valuable skills they need as they transition out of high school and into high-paying jobs that will sustain them throughout their career. We are fortunate to have this lab with this state-of-the-art equipment available to us in Monticello.”
The program commenced with Dr. Clark cutting the ribbon alongside key individuals, students and partners who have supported this important initiative.
Careers in the field of Welding have been categorized as High Demand Career Initiatives (HDCI) careers in Georgia. In 2022, Georgia Senate Bill 379 was signed into law by Governor Brian P. Kemp. As Georgia’s first-ever state-funded apprenticeship initiative, the HDCI Program represents a historic investment by the State of Georgia in registered apprenticeships. This program aimed to both upskill Georgians and increase skilled talent within Georgia’s high-demand industries.