RADNOR, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Airgas, an Air Liquide company, is pleased to announce that the company’s High School Welding Education Initiative continues to expand and help students across the country prepare for a career in welding. For the 2023 academic year, 14 returning schools and 41 new schools from 22 states have been selected to be part of the program.
These programs were chosen based on four key factors: high unmet need at the school; a productive welding program with the potential to graduate job-ready welders; passionate teachers; and enthusiastic local Airgas champions. Participating programs receive a customized mix of hands-on professional development training or continuing education for welding teachers in close collaboration with Airgas associates. In addition, Airgas donates welding consumables or equipment, safety PPE, and other resources to help support welding program growth within these schools.
The American Welding Society (AWS) forecasts that 336,000 new welding professionals are projected to be needed by 2026, with 84,000 average welding jobs to be filled annually between 2022-2025. Since 2018, Airgas has assisted 72 schools, 4,200 welding students and nearly 450 instructors across the country. In the past two years combined, more than 250 students obtained welding jobs directly after graduating from a school program supported by Airgas donations.
This Airgas program has built long-term relationships between local educators and Airgas welding and safety experts. The Airgas High School Welding Education Initiative falls under the Airgas Citizen at Work program, which empowers all associates to engage in volunteer activities and give back to their communities. Through the high school welding program, as part of the larger Citizen at Work umbrella, Airgas associates have volunteered hundreds of hours in dozens of communities to collaborate with the instructors and students for each school.
As the High School Welding Education Initiative continues to grow, there has also been increased interest and support from all aspects of Airgas’ business, including associates, customers, suppliers, government officials, and Air Liquide colleagues, who all have a shared interest in cultivating the next generation of welders to advance the industry in the years ahead.
Jay Worley, Airgas Chief Operating Officer, commented: “As we welcome a record number of schools into the High School Welding Education Initiative Class of 2023, we hope our continued and increasing contributions to welding education inspires students to fill their potential in a welding career, and supports welding educators and schools throughout the United States who are preparing graduates to enter welding, engineering and technical careers. This program’s growth is possible because of our many passionate associates who are stepping up to share their expertise in the communities where they live and work, as well as our customers, colleagues and collaborators who continue to advocate for the importance of welding education.”
Congratulations to the 2023 Participating Schools representing 22 states:
- Anniston High School - Anniston, Alabama
- Barbara Jordan Career Center - Houston, Texas
- Beloit Memorial High School - Beloit, Wisconsin
- Bettye Davis East Anchorage High School - Anchorage, Alaska
- Buckeye Hills Career Center- Rio Grande, Ohio
- Bucksport High School - Bucksport, Maine
- Cherokee High School - Canton, Georgia
- Clarion County Career Center - Clarion, Pennsylvania
- Clearfield County Career & Technology - Clearfield, Pennsylvania
- Cloudland High School - Elizabethton, Tennessee
- Crescent City Junior Senior High School - Crescent City, Florida
- Dulce High School - Dulce, New Mexico
- Exeter Union High School - Exeter, California
- Father Judge High School - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Felicity-Franklin High School - Felicity, Ohio
- Galena Park High School - Galena Park, Texas
- Genesee Career Institute - Flint, Michigan
- Geneva Regional Tech Center - Geneva, Alabama
- Gibson Southern High School - Fort Branch, Indiana
- Hazel Park High School - Hazel Park, Michigan
- Houston County Career Academy - Dothan, Alabama
- Houston Junior Senior High School - Houston, Alaska
- Interlachen Junior Senior High School - Interlachen, Florida
- Jeff Tech - Reynoldsville, Pennsylvania
- Joe Redington Senior Junior Senior High School - Wasilla, Alaska
- Journeys Soaring Impact - Cincinnati, Ohio
- King Kekaulike High School - Pukalani, Hawaii
- Lake Arthur High School - Lake Arthur, New Mexico
- Largo High School - Largo, Florida
- Lima Senior High School - Lima, Ohio
- Lyman High School - Longwood, Florida
- Lyndon Institute - Lyndon Center, Vermont
- Madison Park Technical Vocational School - Boston, Massachusetts
- Merrillville High School - Merrillville, Indiana
- Nathan Hale High School - West Allis, Wisconsin
- New London Community School District - New London, Iowa
- North Branch High School - North Branch, Minnesota
- North Monterey County High School - Castroville, California
- Olomana School - Waimanalo, Hawaii
- Owatonna Public Schools - Owatonna, Minnesota
- Page High School - Page, Arizona
- Palatka Junior Senior High School - Palatka, Florida
- Paso Robles High School - Paso Robles, California
- Razdolna School - Razdolna, Alaska
- Region Two School of Applied Technology - Houlton, Maine
- Riverside High School - Painesville, Ohio
- St. David High School - St. David, Arizona
- Tampa Bay Tech - Tampa Bay, Florida
- Tooele High School - Tooele, Utah
- Ventura High School - Ventura, California
- Veterans Resource Center - Dallas, Texas
- Waipahu High School - Waipahu, Hawaii
- Washington County Career & Technical Education Center - Abingdon, Virginia
- Weld Like A Girl - Yuma, Arizona
- White Mountain Regional High School - Whitefield, New Hampshire
Airgas®, an Air Liquide company, is a leading U.S. supplier of industrial, medical and specialty gases, as well as hardgoods and related products; one of the largest U.S. suppliers of safety products; and a leading U.S. supplier of ammonia products and process chemicals.
Airgas helps its more than 1 million customers advance their business performance and reach their full potential with reliable products, services and expertise used to create, build, care, serve and sustain. With nearly 18,000 associates, over 1,400 locations, a robust eBusiness platform, and Airgas Total Access® telesales channel, Airgas is ready to help customers fill their potential, every day.
As an Air Liquide company, a world leader in gases, technology and services for Industry and Health, Airgas offers customers an unrivaled global footprint and industry-leading technology and innovations.
For more information, please visit www.airgas.com
A world leader in gases, technologies and services for Industry and Health, Air Liquide is present in 73 countries with approximately 67,100 employees and serves more than 3.9 million customers and patients. Oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen are essential small molecules for life, matter and energy. They embody Air Liquide’s scientific territory and have been at the core of the company’s activities since its creation in 1902.
Taking action today while preparing the future is at the heart of Air Liquide’s strategy. With ADVANCE, its strategic plan for 2025, Air Liquide is targeting a global performance, combining financial and extra-financial dimensions. Positioned on new markets, the
Group benefits from major assets such as its business model combining resilience and strength, its ability to innovate and its technological expertise. The Group develops solutions contributing to climate and the energy transition—particularly with hydrogen—and takes action to progress in areas of healthcare, digital and high technologies.
Air Liquide’s revenue amounted to more than 29.9 billion euros in 2022. Air Liquide is listed on the Euronext Paris stock exchange (compartment A) and belongs to the CAC 40, CAC 40 ESG, EURO STOXX 50, FTSE4Good and DJSI Europe indexes.