Eastern Iowa Community Colleges has teamed up with the American Welding Society – Eastern Iowa Section to host its first welding showcase and competition.
The event will begin at 9 a.m. Wednesday, May 18, at the Blong Technology Center, 8500 Hillandale Road, Davenport, with an awards presentation about 1 p.m.
Parents, teachers, and anyone students or job-seekers interested in this career field may attend and witness the action. Visitors can tour the facility and interact with local businesses.
More than 50 college and high school students will compete in three categories, including shielded metal arc welding, gas metal arc welding (MIG), and tungsten inert gas welding (TIG).
The winner of each category will receive a scholarship from the American Welding Society. In addition, prizes such as welding equipment will be given away thanks to the generosity of local sponsors SSAB, Jackson and Lincoln Electric.
“Eastern Iowa Community Colleges is so excited to host the first area welding competition,” said Matt Schmit, EICC’s dean of Operations and Applied Programs. “When we first pitched this idea, we were pleasantly surprised by the overwhelming amount of interest and support from both local high schools and area companies. We hope to make this an annual event.”
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers was $47,010 in May 2021 and employment is expected to grow 8% from 2020-2030.