Nicole LeClair the Welder

#WomenofSteel Article on the Nicole LeClair Welding Bursary Award

Nicole LeClair is a long-standing supporter of the CWB Welding Foundation and CWB Group. She has been an advocate for the CWB Welding Foundation since its establishment and has supported experiential programming over the years by providing knowledge and skills as an instructor for youth. She was also the recipient of a welding education award from CWB in 2001. The CWB Welding Foundation is pleased to reciprocate the support Nicole has shown over the years by hosting the application on their website for a new student award very dear to her heart: the Nicole LeClair Welding Bursary Award.

Nicole calls herself a lifelong learner, and after speaking with her, the CWB Welding Foundation found that this couldn’t be more true. Aside from being a successful Welder Fitter, Welding Engineering Technologist, and Welding Inspector,she received accreditation as a Red Seal Welder in 2018 and is a dedicated Welding Professorat Mohawk College, where she shares her passion for the trades with aspiring welders. She believes that there is ample opportunity tosucceed in the trades, especially welding because it can never be replaced and will always be needed. It is with this belief and her passion for the welding trade in mind that she embarked upon her journey to establish the “Nicole LeClair Welding Bursary Award.” The purpose of the award is to provide support for students who want to pursue a career in welding at the post-secondary level within Ontario. This award has been established by LeClair's personal funds and is further supported by other charitable donations. Contributions from individuals or organizations are encouraged and a tax receipt will be issued from the Nicole LeClair Welding Bursary. Nicole hopes that her award will be able to close the gap that will soon widen with baby boomers retiring from welding careers over the next few years by supporting the training of one student as a welder per academic year.

Nicole is a huge proponent of educating the future welders of tomorrow and has considered teaching her dream job since she started in the industry. She loves problem-solving and fi guring out challenges in welding projects and watching students do the same. “When a student has diffi culty performing a particular weld, but later I see major improvements after [getting help] it is such a satisfying feeling to know that my skills have helped them learn to be a better welder. I am reminded time and again as to why I do what I do when I get positive reinforcement from my students,” said Nicole when asked about her favourite thing about working in the industry. She has made it her life’s work to share her love of the trade and mentor and advocate for youth to enter the trades, and also while working to dispel myths that sadly  still exist in society. The foundation’s mandate is to close the gap that exists for employable skilled trade workers and encourage youth to pursue welding as a viable career option. For every ten welders that retire, currently only one welder enters the workforce to replace them. Nicole LeClair is committed to improving this statistic and providing her bursary award on an annual basis, today and long after she retires. Welding has given Nicole a long and gratifying career, and it is with pride that she plans on giving back to the community and sustaining the important work done by welders for years to come.

To learn more about applying for this award and to join Nicole in helping future welders through donations that support this award, please visit: