IVCC to host 3 welding registration sessions this spring

All new students must register for the program at a session

Declan Kulpa shaves down a leg for a side table Wednesday, July 28, 2023, during SPARK Junior Welding program, part of Illinois Valley Community College's summer camp program.

Illinois Valley Community College’s Welding Department is hosting three welding registration sessions this spring on March 5, April 16 and May 14.

All sessions start at 5 p.m. at the Main Campus.

Session 1 is March 5 in CTC 123 to register for spring courses that start March 18. Session 2 is April 16 in CTC 123 to register for summer or fall courses. Session 3 is May 14, in CTC 123 to register for summer or fall.

All new welding students must register for the program through a welding information session. Sign up for a session by contacting the Workforce Development Division Office at 815-224-0233 or emailing kim_herout@ivcc.edu. Anyone unable to make these dates should contact Herout.

Info sessions are held just down the hall from the Admissions Department, so prospective students can register and enroll all at once.

No previous welding experience is necessary, and instructors work to find the best fit for students at whatever stage they enter the program, said Program Coordinator Theresa Molln.

IVCC’s welding program is ideal for beginners who’ve never welded, for those with some welding background, and for industry employees who want to expand skills at their current employer, Molln said. Students receive individualized instruction in small classes and use state-of-the-art welding equipment and a large lab and fabrication area.

A flexible schedule makes it convenient to students with all types of commitments to attend, from swing shift workers to high school students. Classes are offered mornings, afternoons and evenings Monday through Thursday. Instructors are backed by experience across varied industries.

Some local industries set flexible work schedules so employees can attend classes, or partner with IVCC to train their workers.

Welding draws people looking for good-paying jobs, farmers and others who use the skill in repair work – even artists who want to build showcases for their work. Others just enjoy the skill and its many uses, Molln said.

Graduates are welcomed into a workforce at industries such as Vactor Manufacturing in Streator, HCC in Mendota, Sabic in Ottawa, Marquis Energy in Hennepin and Carus in La Salle, Molln said.

Two students who graduated from the program last fall went straight to work in industry or with a pipefitters union, while a third is training for a career as an underwater welder. IVCC’s district is a prime labor market for welders because its industries range from vehicle manufacturing and fabricated metal product manufacturing to machine shops, agriculture, construction and mining.

Activities happen outside the classroom too, like a spring welding competition for high school and college students, a week-long SPARK Jr. Welding Academy summer session for youths, and a campus welding club that lets students work independently on projects.

For more information on the program, contact Molln at 815-224-0630 or by email theresa_molln@ivcc.edu or visit https://www.ivcc.edu/programsbyareaofstudy/welding/index.php.