PA Awards Grant to Prepare Welding Apprentices for Jobs in Southeastern PA

Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Acting Secretary Rick Siger announced $297,000 in new funding to help boost the Boilermakers Local 13 apprenticeship program and prepare their welding apprentices for careers in the commonwealth. In his inaugural address Governor Josh Shapiro pledged to invest in apprenticeships, vocational training, and career and technical education, saying “real freedom comes when we create pathways to new opportunities by investing in vo-tech and job training programs.” This funding builds on Governor Shapiro’s commitment of investing in our workforce and reigniting our economy.

The grant, through Pennsylvania’s Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Grant Program, will help Boilermakers Local 13 place a dedicated welding instructor in their Bucks County lab and get apprentices ready for required industry exams.

Pennsylvania’s Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Grant program, administered through DCED, works to increase apprenticeship availability to commonwealth employers to assist them with their talent recruitment and development. Funding is provided to eligible applicants for the purpose of increasing apprenticeship accessibility. Eligible uses of funds include expenses related to instruction that complements on-the-job learning.

“Pennsylvanians who enroll in an apprenticeship program can earn a paycheck while they learn the skills they need to secure a rewarding career,” said DCED Acting Secretary Siger. “These programs are an essential tool for growing our workforce and our economy by providing an affordable way for Pennsylvanians to find success.”

The welding instructor at Boilermakers Local 13 will work to help apprentices pass the American Welding Society’s D1.1 structural steel weld test, as well as an American Society of Mechanical Engineers IX pressure test; both of which are considered standard in the industry. After passing these tests, apprentices can further specialize their skills by taking additional weld tests.

“The International Brotherhood of Boilermakers Local Lodge No.13 is honored to receive this Pennsylvania Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Grant,” said Matthew Fink, Apprentice and Training Coordinator for Boilermakers Local 13. “This grant will provide the necessary resources we need to improve the effectiveness of our program and train our apprentices to become highly skilled and proficient welders who will have a lifelong career as a field construction boilermaker.”