Wallace State-Oneonta conducting first welding classes during spring semester

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The Wallace State-Oneonta welding facility features 10 state-of-the-art booths for its students.

ONEONTA – Wallace State-Oneonta has its first welding classes underway.

The 10-booth welding station at Oneonta features state-of-the-art Lincoln Electric equipment. Like in Hanceville, welding students spend part of the day in the classroom and the other half working in the welding lab.

“The welding classes are going great so far. The students enrolled in the program are excited. Welding is a sought after trade, and Blount County has a high rate of people commuting out of town to work in the welding profession,” said Dr. Kelley Jones, the Wallace State-Oneonta director. “We are glad the welding option has come to fruition here.”

Welding students in the Wallace State-Oneonta program can earn an associate’s degree in general technology, a 4-semester certificate or multiple short-term certificates. The program offers training in industrial blueprints, structural and pipe welding symbol interpretation, blueprint reading for fabrication, pipe fitting, weld inspection and weld testing instruction.

“This is a great opportunity to expand the welding program for Wallace State. We are always attracting a lot of students from Blount County, and the Oneonta campus is closer for them to attend,” said Wallace State welding instructor Randy Hammond. “I see it opening up many avenues to students that they otherwise wouldn’t have. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

Wallace State’s welding program boasts yearly job placement rates of 100 percent. According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, welding students at Wallace State can expect to earn entry-level salaries of up to $40,000 and increasing to $80,000 with just one to two years’ experience.

Wallace State-Oneonta is located off Highway 75 at 728 Second Ave. E., and can be reached at 205-625-4020. You can also visit its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Wallacestateoneonta/.

For more information about Wallace State, visit www.wallacestate.edu.