WGTC receives industry welding accreditation
CARROLLTON — West Georgia Technical College’s welding program has earned National Center for Construction Education and Research certification as an accredited training and education facility.
The NCCER accreditation means that West Georgia Tech students in the welding program will be training at an official NCCER training and educational facility. Those students will have an opportunity to take the NCCER test, and if they pass will be NCCER certified.
“Companies who are hiring will often ask if you have the NCCER certification,” said Brandon Parrott, welding technology instructor, who is based at the LaGrange campus. “It’s tracked through a registry so potential employers can look in the database and see that you are certified. I’ve even heard of some companies providing up to four dollars per hour raises to those that are NCCER certified.”
The NCCER registry allows organizations and companies to track the qualifications of a potential hire. Students also receive an industry-recognized card indicating which assessments they have completed.
“Earning this accreditation is another example of how West Georgia Technical College is training our future workforce to meet the needs of business and industry,” said West Georgia Technical College President Steve G. Daniel. “… I want to thank Zach Fields and CEFGA for their partnership with us as our industry sponsor, as well as Pat Hannon, Linda Sullivan, Brandon Parrott and everyone else who played a role in the NCCER accreditation process.”
West Georgia Technical College began the NCCER accreditation process around four years ago. Instructors must take a 40-hour course and each potential NCCER training facility goes through a rigorous process of establishing industry standards within the facility with the help of a sponsor from the industry.
“Achieving the NCCER accreditation for our welding program was a priority because it really does have a positive impact when one of our graduates enters the job market with the NCCER certification,” said Pat Hannon, WGTC vice president of academic affairs. “This accreditation is an outside validation of the high quality and standards that we expect from all of our programs.”
Hannon also thanked the Construction Education Foundation of Georgia, or CEFGA, West Georgia Tech’s industry sponsor throughout the accreditation process. CEFGA representatives worked with West Georgia Tech officials to ensure that the welding lab renovations met industry standards.
Upon approval from both CEFGA and NCCER, Zach Fields, CEFGA director of school relations, presented the official NCCER accreditation to West Georgia Tech administration and faculty on April 22.