Welding program considers new home

MCCC’s growing welding program is looking into a new home.

The program, which was awarded a $1.7 million grant from the Department of Labor last year, now is considering whether to accept the gift of a building at 1004 Hurd Road in Frenchtown Township.

The college is reviewing whether the building and five acres, donated by Pump Engineering LLC, would be appropriate for its new welding technology program.

The review includes environmental scans, surveying and appraisals.

“With an expected shortage of skilled welders, our enrollment and job placement should rise as we expand our facilty,” Justin Schmidt assistant professor of welding, said about the new building.

MCCC was among 68 of the 274 submitting organizations to be awarded Community-Based Job Training Grants from the U.S Department of Labor. It was the only community college in Michigan to win the award.

The grant will pay to renovate the new building and expand the welding program beyond what MCCC is now offering on the Main Campus, Schmidt said.

The approximate cost of the renovation is $444,000 and includes architectural fees, electrical and mechanical engineering, construction of welding stations, air handling systems for welding stations and a welding gas system.

There are two types of classes that would be taught in the new welding center, beginning and advanced.

The beginners program is an accelerated class, similar to a traditional welding program. It helps the students in taking the QC-10 American Welding Society Certification Examination.

The advanced track prepares the student for the QC-11 American Welding Society Advanced Welder Certification Examination.

Both are being offered through the welding program at MCCC.

The certificates qualify students for entry into advanced-level employment, self-employment and local welding labor unions.