Asnuntuck Becomes First American Welding Society Accredited Test Facility in Connecticut
ENFIELD, Conn. — Asnuntuck Community College recently became the first American Welding Society (AWS) accredited test facility (ATF) in Connecticut. Students enrolled in Asnuntuck’s welding program will have an opportunity to earn certifications.
According to Richard Munroe, one of two certified instructors at Asnuntuck, the program establishes minimum requirements for test facilities, their personnel, and equipment to qualify for accreditation to test and qualify welders. AWS’ website explains that entrusting welder certification to ATF specialists makes good business sense for contractors and fabricators. Companies are increasingly realizing the shortcomings of self-qualification and are switching to AWS accredited test facilities to test and qualify their welders. ATFs help them save money, improve productivity, and reduce liability by entrusting their welder certification to experts.
The Asnuntuck Community College welding program began in 2004 at Windsor High School and was moved to the Asnuntuck campus in 2008. Now known as the welding and fabrication program, it has graduated approximately 1,000 students since its inception. The college has dedicated 10,000 square feet to welding instruction in a state-of-the-art facility on the Enfield campus, which includes 75 welding booths.
“I am so proud of this accomplishment and thankful to the staff for all the hard work they put into this process to achieve this certification,” said Mary Bidwell, interim dean of Advanced Manufacturing Technology.
Michelle Coach, Asnuntuck’s interim CEO, added that “we are proud of our instructors and staff. They have worked to achieve this accreditation and establish a superior level of quality. We are honored to be the only accredited test facility in Connecticut. They have proven to be leaders in the field of welding.”