Carter High School principal Angie Messer, CHS students, district and community leaders cut the ribbon on a new welding lab at the school on Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021.
Students at Carter High School will have more opportunities for hands-on experience in a highly sought after career path, thanks to a new facility that opened this week.
On Aug. 26, Carter celebrated the ribbon-cutting on a 3,600-square-foot welding lab, a facility that includes:
-- 10 self-ventilating welding booths; -- 10 multi-process welders that allow students to practice a variety of welding techniques; -- one welder that is specific to aluminum welding; -- and a plasma table with a 4-by-8-foot bed that allows students to create two-dimensional designs out of sheet steel or other metals.
In addition to those tools, students will have access to a variety of gas-powered cutting torches and other hand tools.
Carter principal Angie Messer said students are thrilled about the new lab, and that welding classes at the school always have a waiting list.
“Some of our students that are here will go into leadership in this industry, and some of them will be welders forever,” she said. “The beauty of the program is it provides pathways for all.”
The ribbon-cutting ceremony included comments from KCS Assistant Superintendent Jon Rysewyk; Director of Career and Technical Education Keith Wilson; Amy Nolan, Vice President of Regional Enhancement for the Knoxville Chamber; and Sharon Shanks, Director of Community Based Initiatives for Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs.
11th-grade student Kaleb Harper said he is currently planning to attend a four-year college, but has enjoyed the welding program as a break from traditional academic coursework.
“I do know there’s money to be made in welding, because there’s a lot of jobs available,” he added. “So I have a back-up plan.”