PDCCC partners with NGNN

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 25, 2003

Paul D. Camp Community College (PDCCC) and Northrop Grumman Newport News (NGNN) formed a partnership on June 2 in an articulation agreement meeting held at the Franklin campus.

Thanks to NGNN, a new welding curriculum using stand-alone CD-ROM will be taught at PDCCC this fall. PDCCC is the first community college to participate in the renewable one-year program. &uot;The pilot program will benefit students, the college and the shipyard,&uot; said Robert Leber, manager of training programs at NGNN.

The first step in the partnership program begins this summer when Jon Cookson, PDCCC assistant professor of welding, will spend five weeks at Northrop Gurmman to refresh his knowledge of new techniques and equipment.

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&uot;This is a good program because it will allow my students more time for hands-on training in the welding lab. They will also have the freedom to work on the computer at their own speed,&uot; said Cookson.

The welding program is licensed to the College at zero cost, according to Joseph C. Barto, II, NGNN program manager. Students will have access to three computers on the Franklin campus on which to access the welding tutorials. The computer will not replace the hands-on instructions from an instructor, but will allow students to use the program for review or to get ahead.

&uot;The program provides a bridge for students to transition from school right into the job market,&uot; said Barto. After completing the course, students over 18-years-old may apply to the apprentice school or for employment at NGNN.

Leber described the success of the program introduced last year at the New Horizon’s Regional Education Center in Hampton. All sixteen second-year participants successfully completed the course. &uot;It is a great program because it provides well-trained welders for the shipyard and gives the shipyard a proactive role in helping the schools,&uot; said Leber.

According to Leber, high school students can learn skills quickly, start out making $9.50 an hour, quickly move up to 11.50 per hour, and have a profession that will last the rest of their life. The program is also available to adults who want to improve skills or learn new welding techniques.

&uot;The welding program offers a great opportunity for students in the college’s service region,&uot; said Singleton, PDCCC vice president of instruction and student development.

&uot;This is an exciting program, which is financially feasible for parents because it shortens the educational path leading to quick employment.&uot;

Other institutions using the program for the first time this fall include Virginia Beach City Public School System, the Pruden Center in Suffolk, and the Chesapeake Center for Science and Technology.

For more information on the welding program, contact Jon Cookson at 569-6761.