Has there been a Metal Shop Meeting since April 8? I asked about one on May 4, and haven’t heard anything yet. Doesn’t look like there’s anything on the calendar. I really wanted to talk about this in committee, but since that’s not an option, here goes:
I think the availability of welding classes is an area that we as a group need serious work on. These are training required tools that are promoted to new and prospective members as great reasons to join the space that we don’t train on with any regularity. As a result, these people are presented a false bill of goods. Put simply- it’s not fair.
Under the current system, the first step is a safety class. This class does not qualify you to use the equipment, this class qualifies you to take other classes to use the equipment… and we’ve had 6 of those opportunities this year, including the combo classes. There have been 22 weeks (165 days) so far this year. and these classes are limited to what 8, maybe 10 people max? Based on our historic growth rates (last years numbers) we’ll have added about 158 net members in that amount of time. What this means is that less than 38% of those new members have even had the opportunity to sign up for an actual welding class assuming that schedule and current members needing the class, etc., are not even factored in. The real numbers are much lower.
If somehow, you were one of the lucky 60 that got to take the safety class, Now it’s time to find a process class:
Wanna learn to MIG weld (or at least get cleared to use the machine)? Good luck. There have been 5 classes this year and the last one was on March 24.
TIG? Still 5 classes, but at least they’re spread out such that January and April were the only months without any opportunities to learn.
So there have been 10 total process classes with class size limits of what, 6? So maaaybe all the people who took safety have had the opportunity to use one process? Assuming they were the only one’s looking?
Let me be perfectly clear- I’m not calling anybody out. This is a group problem and it requires a group solution. And before the inevitable “Well, Mr. Problem-presenter, how come you’re not stepping up to help?” I’ve tried. As outlined above, I can’t take a MIG class to prove I can teach one (hence the relevance to this thread) and I’ve offered to teach the TIG class if I could get somebody to check me off even though I’ll be the first to admit- it’s my weakest process by far, no luck. I teach induction forge/KMG grinder once a week (unless I’m teaching open forge) I’m happy to add a welding class.