Barton Community College showed off its new Welding Lab by hosting a Great Bend Chamber of Commerce Coffee.
Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman said workforce development is part of the college’s mission. Students can enroll in the welding program and in one semester they can walk away with a skill and be completely employable.
Heilman thanked a number of individuals and businesses whose support made this program possible. “Everybody is part of the progress, part of Barton County Community College,” he said.
Welding instructor John Lakey teaches a daytime class and Keelan Wertz teaches a night course.
Students who successfully complete the course leave with their American Welding Society (AWS) Level I welding certificate, Lakey said. That goes on their resumes and their credential is listed in a national data base.
The college has been offering the 16-hour certificate program for years at area correctional facilities. Area employers had been asking for a program at the college. The Welding Lab is full of state-of-the-art equipment thanks to the generosity and cooperation of Barton’s industry partners and donors to the Barton Foundation.