Inaugural Mind over Metal camp inspires young welder to pursue welding

Inaugural Mind over Metal camp inspires young welder to pursue welding

Milton, ON - March 2, 2016 - It was just over a year ago when the Canadian Welding Association Foundation (CWA Foundation) hosted its first Mind over Metal welding camp at St. Joseph High School in Edmonton, Alberta.

Roughly 25 kids aged 12-16 spent a week learning about welding safety, the various opportunities in the welding profession, and then they got a chance to flip the lid down and make some arcs and sparks.

For one attendee Matthew Kootenay, 17, the hands on experience to weld several projects and build meaningful relationships with new friends sparked his interest to switch schools so he could attend St. Joseph High School full time and hone his skills in their welding program.

“I really enjoy welding, the teachers at St. Joseph because of the creative projects they get us to weld as a class.”

For the grade 11 student, his camp experience has come full circle. During the second Mind over Metal camp hosted at St. Joseph during the summer, Matthew helped out with the camp in a big way – being a mentor to the first time camp attendees.

Deborah Mates, Executive Director of the CWA Foundation, said the goal of the camps was to introduce students to the welding profession in a safe environment with the hopes they would pursue welding in some capacity, whether as a welder, welding inspector, welding engineer, welding educator or even a welding supervisor.

“These camps are designed to provide students with hands on experience of what welding is all about and introduce them to all the possibilities in the profession,” she said. “Hearing Matthew’s testimonial and how the camp impacted his future decision in terms of his career choice is indicative that sometimes all kids need is a helping hand to understand their full potential – and when they do, the sky is the limit.”

About the CWA Foundation
The Foundation’s key mandates are to support public safety awareness, and to address the skilled welding labour shortage in Canada. It will also focus on creating access to educational opportunities for all levels of education from elementary through to post- secondary, as well as indigenous peoples, women, those with disabilities and visible minorities.

For media inquiries please contact:
Deborah Mates, Executive Director, CWA Foundation
800.844.6790 ext. 241
Deborah.mates@cwa-foundation.org