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Since 1998, thirty-thousand Ironworkers have been trained and certified in an extensive number of pre-qualified welding procedures through the Ironworkers Welding Certification Program. This program is nationally recognized and was created in conjunction with structural welding code from the American Welding Society (AWS). This program is an integral part of the Ironworker’s apprenticeship and training program which is led by Executive Director Mike White.
To date there are 60 training facilities nationwide that meet rigid standards as set forth by the Ironworkers International and AWS. The goal of this program is to not only train the Ironworker’s members in the necessary welding procedures that are needed to produce a quality job, but to also reduce the time and costs of having to re-test welders on the jobsites, a huge benefit for employers. Every trained and certified Ironworker is encouraged to maintain their continuity in welding procedures, this can be documented and certified while on the job so time does not have to be taken away from the jobsite to be re-tested.
Ed Abbott, a general organizer for the Ironworkers, and one of the welding certification program’s auditors, said in a recent interview that the program is constantly developing and implementing new pre-qualified welding procedures into the program as needed in order to meet the demands of the changing construction industry. The Ironworkers also apply a quality assurance program to ensure that each and every one of their training facilities is training its members in the most up-to-date and valuable welding procedures available. The goal for this program’s future is to gain wider acceptance by those contractors who employ Ironworkers, a step in the right direction to increase the market share that union construction has in the industry.
Questions and comments can be directed to Ed Abbott, General Organizer for the Ironworkers International at 202-383-4800.