Building Foundational Skills in Welding at Lake City Secondary School

Woman of Steel participant welding a T joint in the horizontal position using the Shielded Metal Arc welding process.

Lake City Secondary School gets upgrades to its welding shop, thanks to the CWB Welding Foundation and Bird Construction.

Lake City Secondary School in (LCSS) Williams Lake, BC, was one of the schools that received funding through the CWB Welding Foundation in the fall of 2020 to upgrade their welding shop.

The Foundation invested $15,000 in LCSS, with a generous donation from Bird Construction, so the school could make a number of enhancements, including new equipment and consumables. More than 450 students from grades 8 to 12 are benefitting from enhanced welding education in the 2020-2021 school year.

In addition to teaching students how to work safely—using industry-approved techniques, materials, and tools—this investment will help students build foundational skills prior to entering the welding trade, inspire youth to follow their passions, and expose them to the potential future that welding could provide for them.

“LCSS staff and students would like to thank the CWB Welding Foundation and Bird Construction for their efforts and generosity,” said Marshall Hacker, the welding instructor at LCSS. “Our school looks forward to providing youth with welding education and hands-on experience well into the future.”

The funding has also allowed Hacker to create an extra-curricular welding and machining club that is being offered multiple times a week, with physical distancing provisions in place. Hacker looks forward to arranging for guest speakers and demonstrations to join classes in the future.

“Bird is proud to support the communities where we work by contributing to educational programs that help build our industry’s pool of skilled trades workers,” said Tannis Proulx, Senior Vice President, Industrial Construction at Bird. “It is exciting to see new students enter welding education programs at Lake City Secondary School, knowing that the training will help them develop rewarding and meaningful careers. Future workers will be equipped with the skills and knowledge to work on projects that strengthen Canada’s infrastructure and economy.”

Hacker reports that student motivation is at an all-time high, and that student access to modern, industry-standard processes and equipment has been improved. Students are responding positively to the new skills they are learning.

“Since the addition of the new equipment, I am now able to learn more about different types of welding,” said student Landon Wiggins. “I have never welded with the TIG welder before and am excited to learn the new techniques that are required to create a successful weld.

“Due to the new equipment, I have found a passion for welding and plan on pursuing a career in the welding trade,” he continued.

The CWB Welding Foundation is thankful to Bird Construction for their support in making a positive impact on welding education for LCSS students.

An LCSS student makes sparks fly.

An LCSS student makes sparks fly.