Boot Camps: The Student View – Part 2
The next installment in our Boot Camps: The Student View series brings us to the welding boot camp. For the welding boot camp students, classes have been running for about a month, and their internship experiences are just beginning.
Our first question goes back to the process of getting admitted into the boot camps. The appeal of the boot camps is that 90% of people who start the welding or CNC boot camps complete them, and of those who complete, 87% are offered employment within three months.
In order to set people up for this type of success, those interested must complete a typical job (or employment) application process – complete with resumes, applications, and interviews – to secure an internship, and must also meet academic requirements.
We encourage everyone to come to the information sessions early and take advantage of the many resources available throughout the college. For some the application process is simple, for others, it requires more effort, but for everyone, the payoff is worth it.
Did you encounter any challenges when trying to get into the boot camp? What did you do to get here?
“The testing (TABE), but once I got the help [offered by the Student Success Center], it worked out great.”
“I found out about the August 4 information session the day before. It was very fast paced from there – between testing, getting results, and interviewing. It is an hour-and-15-minute drive to school, which requires an extraordinary amount of daily preparation to balance all the other responsibilities. “
“No, I did not. I went to the Test Drive in June, took the tests, wrote and submitted my cover letter and resume to the boot camp, and waited for acceptance from an employer.”
Welding boot camp includes classes to learn the welding process (GMAW, FCAW, SMAW, and GTAW), print reading, occupational math, and team building. Throughout the boot camp, resources are available to help students succeed, from instructors to Kim (the boot camp “Mom”) to the Student Success Center, and throughout the MPTC campus.
What has been the best part of your experience so far?
“I love turning my hobby into a passion. I love it and enjoy this experience and hope to continue this.”
“I’m glad to have met so many helpful and motivating people.”
“The best part has been learning the different welding processes and improving each time I practice them. There is always more to learn and smoother welds to achieve!”
All of the resources listed above are available because boot camp is still boot camp – it’s 13 intense weeks with an attendance requirement. It’s also a second chance, and an opportunity that might not be available without the existing relationships between MPTC and local businesses. It’s more than just learning to weld, it’s learning about life. And that can present some new challenges, which we love to see people conquer.
What has been the hardest part of your experience so far?
“Learning new techniques or welding so far. It is TIG that has been my obstacle.”
“My biggest challenge is trying to keep organized with the daily onslaught of new material from classwork. “
“The hardest part has been juggling my personal life (daycare, commuting), as well as my perfectionism. I have been working on having a good growth mindset.”
As boot camp internships ramp up, the on-the-job training becomes every student’s opportunity to take classroom skills right to the real world. In the weeks ahead, we’ll take a closer look at student experiences once they have a chance to really know the company with more internship hours.
What part of the internship experience are you anticipating most?
“To get a job, learn a new field, and learn how things are done in manufacturing.”
“I am looking forward to seeing my welding improve.”
“I am anticipating the 6G welding practice, as well as welding pipes. At the end of the internship, I believe I will be tested on ASME 6G.”
And the final question we’ll just keep asking. As boot camps students learn more about boot camps, we’re curious about what they would share with you.
What do you want people to know about boot camps?
“That boot camps have growth opportunities that are beneficial to yourself and others.”
“The boot camp is probably the most effective way for the government and private business to wisely spend tax dollars.”
“It is a great opportunity to learn a new, employable skill with the advantage of having real work experience at the same time as well!”