Dual credit welding student Saul Hernandez arrives early to class to help prep metal at North Central Texas College’s Graham. (Photo courtesy Elizabeth Deiter, NCTC)
North Central Texas College welding instructor Brian Hearn taught the first dual credit welding course at the Graham campus this semester. (Photo courtesy Elizabeth Deiter, NCTC)

Graham ISD students thrive in dual credit welding program

North Central Texas College Graham campus’ first round of dual credit welding courses for Graham High School students has gone well, the college said.
The Fall 2016 semester marked the first dual credit class for welding on the campus, with nine students.
Welding Instructor Brian Hearn has more than 50 years of experience welding. Hearn has taught welding classes at NCTC for two years. He said he has seen a surprising amount of dedication from these high school students.
“I’m really happy with this class,” Hearn said. “They are very dedicated and talented welders who are eager to learn. I open the doors to the welding lab 15 minutes before class starts and they are always here early, ready to get started.”
The students have also been pleased with their own progress in the class. Saul Hernandez is one of those students who is already seeing the benefits of the course.
“I like that we actually get to weld in this class,” Hernandez said. “We get a lot of hands-on experience. I think we’re really getting a feel for what it will be like to be on the job.”
The students in the dual credit classes can continue after high school in the regular open enrollment welding courses. The classes are designed to make that transition as easy as possible.
“Taking welding classes while still in high school helps expedite the process for these students,” Hearn said. “If they want to continue once they’ve graduated high school, they’ve got a leg up.”
Currently the students are taking Beginning Welding. Next semester they will return to NCTC for Intermediate Welding.
Though Hernandez isn’t sure what his future holds, he’s not ruling out welding as a career.
“I’m not sure what I want to do, but I have learned that this is a really big industry and a good career,” Hernandez said. “For now, I definitely want to keep taking classes.”
Introductory and intermediate welding courses will be offered to anyone interested for the spring semester. For more information, contact the Graham campus at 940-521-0720, or visit nctc.edu. 

The Graham Leader

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