In 2006, the Wall Street Journal asked “Where have all the welders gone?” A few years later, America experienced a great recession and tremendous job losses. But there has been one field with a shortage of talent, a field that has been with us since the bronze age: welding.
In 2011, Ryan Blythe, the executive director of Georgia Trade School, spent a summer vacation focusing on how to attract young people back into the skilled trades. Blythe had worked with long time associates at a traditional for profit industrial school but he felt those schools were not meeting the needs of employers or the community.
Georgia Trade School is designed to be radically different than any other welding school in the city, state or region. It starts with style in a building that previously housed a digital media studio. There's track lighting, exposed ceilings, contemporary furniture, popular music playing on speakers, an observatory window for demonstrations and décor to create an atmosphere that young people will enjoy.
But the strength of Georgia Trade School is not just stylistic, it also comes from its substance. A staff with more than 40 years experience in welding, relationships with commercial clients, schools and government agencies, an onsite certified welding inspector, machines that reflect the latest in technology, a curriculum that has been created to focus on the skills employers demand and a laboratory program that gives each student nearly four hundred hours of hands on training.
The State of Georgia estimates nearly 2,000 welders will be needed in the next five years. Nationally, the figure is even more staggering: more than 238,000 by 2019. With the average age of a welder at 54, it is critical that we address our shortage. The process of welding appears in more than half of our commercial products, was critical in winning the Pacific in World War II and in the development of the International Space Station. Do you want to work in a cubicle or help build America’s next great naval vessel or skyscraper?
Georgia Trade School also plays a key role in the community providing employers with an incentive to stay in the area with a ready welding workforce. Georgia Trade School is a proud supporter of charities including MUST Ministries and Wounded Warrior Project.
For more information on how you can help us rebuild America, visit our Kennesaw facility at 2260 Moon Station Court, Suite 110, call us at 770-590-WELD or 24/7 on the worldwide web at www.georgiatradeschool.com.