The National Center for Welding Education and Training (dba Weld-Ed) is housed at Lorain County Community College (LCCC) in Elyria, Ohio. The Center is a collaboration of community colleges, universities, workforce agencies, and business and industry members representing welding and materials joining industry perspectives. The Center’s primary mission is to expand the number of higher skilled welding technicians while at the same time addressing the overall welding and materials joining needs of a multifaceted industry.
The Center will enhance education and training programs, recruitment, and services that are available to current and future employees in the field. The Center conducts market-driven research across many welding-related sectors and uses forward-looking data to identify the current and future needs of the industry. The Weld-Ed Center uses this data to improve welding education programs, address recruitment and retention issues, expand workforce diversity, enhance existing curriculum, and advance laboratory science and application.
The Center is managed by a professional staff, supported by individuals representing various institutional members who serve in a variety of leadership roles including: applied research, curriculum and learning resources development, hosting educational seminars, and as advisors/consultants.
The Center was initially funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). A sustainability plan is underway to ensure the Center’s future operations. Future funding will come from a variety of sources including business and industry, government agencies, foundations and fees for products and services.
The Center’s work plan is evaluated annually. The Public Services Institute (PSI) at LCCC conducts the internal evaluation. The external evaluation is conducted by The National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers (NCATC).
The Weld-Ed Mission
Weld-Ed is a national partnership of colleges, universities, professional societies, government, and private industry committed to increasing the number and quality of welding and materials joining technicians to meet industry demand.
Weld-Ed strives to improve the quality of education and training services to address the hiring and professional development needs of the welding industry.
The Center’s Goals are to:
- Increase the number of welding technicians to meet the on-going workforce needs
- Promote comprehensive reform of welding education
- Promote and enhance faculty professional development and continuing education for welding educators.
The accomplishment of these goals will be a driver in the future of the materials joining industry in the U.S. Working together the educational partners, business partners and AWS are identifying the new and emerging technologies and methods that will be keys to the competitiveness of the industry. That information will be the foundation in building future curricula and services to meet the needs of current and future welding technicians.
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