With manufacturing growing and the industry’s skilled workforce shrinking, it’s now as important as ever to promote hands-on skills and education while fostering excitement over the work American manufacturers do.
At PFERD, we take this task seriously, and as an industry leader whose history dates back over two centuries, we take great pride in being a part of this education.
Taking place every two years, this is the world’s largest professional education event, featuring young competitors of the highest level from over 60 countries. Each competitor must demonstrate and perform technical skills specific to their profession. It’s an opportunity for exciting, healthy competition, but also for young people to connect, exchange ideas, learn from each other, and grow as professionals in their field.
This year’s competition will take place on August 11-16 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
The AWS SkillsUSA World Team Welder
The SkillsUSA team is a force to be reckoned with—the epitome of American manufacturing excellence. The American Welding Society’s (AWS) division of the WorldSkills Competition truly exemplifies the best in the industry—since 1991 when the AWS weld trials began, the U.S. has placed 8 out of the 11 times they competed internationally—and the current contestants have been working very hard over the last few years to be a part of it.
It was not an easy road for these young welders. It began with 48 candidates at the Invitational Pre-Trials, then narrowed down to six welding students at the U.S. Invitational Weld Trials at FABTECH in November 2014. Following that showdown, the top three students underwent a vigorous one-week training event, and the final national culmination, where the finalist was chosen, recently took place at the National Welding Competition in Huntsville, AL. Next stop, Sao Paulo!
PFERD and SkillsUSA
For us at PFERD, everything leading up to the announcement of the national finalist has been thrilling, and we’re proud of all of the competitors. However, we’re extremely excited to announce that this year’s finalist is Andrew Cardin, our local welding champ.
Cardin, a 2011 graduate of Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School took second place in the National Welding Competition in 2013 and entered again for the 2015 competition. His submitted projects got him chosen to compete at FABTECH, where he placed in the top three, and his next incredible accomplishment was becoming the National finalist, and the one welding division American to represent our country at the Word Competition in Brazil.
But that’s certainly not where our involvement begins and ends. At PFERD, we believe that the competition and the contestants exemplify our mission and goals—our commitment to being the best and never sacrificing quality. We’re proud that as of November 2014, we are the official and exclusive abrasive and power brush sponsor of the SkillsUSA welding team.
As a part of this sponsorship, PFERD has supplied abrasives and brushes to all three finalists and to the competitors at the January Tune-Up Event, held at the Robotic Technology Park in Tanner, Alabama. We provided each of them with our industry-leading power brushes and abrasives, including new STEEL Cut Burs, COMBITWIST® Stringer Bead Wheels, CORINOX® Files for Stainless Steel, and CC-GRIND® SOLID Grinding Discs.
But that’s not all. We realize that when the goal is quality and craftsmanship, using the right tools is only one of the many important pieces of the puzzle. That’s why we’re also supplying these competitors with practical, substantial expertise, teaching them about the applications and giving hands-on help to meet the technical and aesthetic standards of this demanding competition.
The SkillsUSA competitors aren’t just doing your everyday welding—they’re performing highly precise welds on a variety of metals with many challenging techniques, and we’re excited to provide them with the best solutions. We’re not only supplying them with products, but enabling them to find the perfect product solution for every step of their processes and every step of the competition. In this way, we’re truly preparing the next generation of American welders for success.
At PFERD, we’re proud of our local welding champion and national finalist, Andrew Cardin, and we’re proud of all of these bright young welding stars. We believe wholeheartedly in the promise of them and of the industry, and we can’t wait to see what the WorldSkills Competition holds.