Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth got a hands-on introduction to welding this week after LNG Canada partnered with CWB Welding Foundation to deliver a week-long camp in Prince Rupert.
The camp, Arx and Sparx, was developed by the CWB Welding Foundation, a national not-for-profit organization supporting the need for skilled welding tradespeople. LNG Canada funded the camp which was hosted by Coast Mountain Colleg.
“By introducing young people to trades training programs while they are still in school, we hope they will be left with a positive impression and consider pursuing trades certification when they graduate,” Tracey MacKinnon, Workforce Development Manager at LNG Canada said.
The camp focused on welding safety, gas metal arc welding (GMAW), an introduction to weld symbols, and a brief overview of the impact welding has on their daily lives.
Once the theoretical portion is completed, students put their practical welding skills to the test by creating their own projects.
“Students build confidence and have fun while being supervised by professionals in a safe environment,” said Susan Crowley, executive director, CWB Welding Foundation. “Through experiential learning opportunities like the Arx and Sparx welding camp, their newly sparked interest in welding may lead to further education and employment.”
An elder from Lax Kw’alaams was also present during the week to provide learnings and cultural context and each project created will include reference to Indigenous cultural teachings.
This camp is one of six welding camps LNG funded across B.C. this summer as part of their long-term workforce development strategy to increase participation in trades training for a highly-skilled Canadian welding workforce.
Jenna Cocullo | Journalist
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