Welding Students Secure High-Paying Jobs

MatthewsEl Camino College Compton Center helps students get the training needed to qualify for good- paying jobs with room for advancement. Compton Center’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) Department can also help those who are unemployed or under-employed get retrained and back into the workforce. Depending on the occupation a student selects, training may take from six months to two years.

Associate degrees and certificate programs are available for many vocational and technical areas that employers need. ECC Compton Center’s Career and Technical Education Department offers training in 11 different occupational programs including Administration of Justice, Aerospace Fastener Manufacturing, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration, Automotive Collision Repair, Automotive Technology, Business, Computer Information Systems, Fire and Emergency Technology, Machine Tool Technology, Manufacturing Technology, and Welding.

Long Beach resident Stevaughn Matthews enrolled in ECC Compton Center’s welding program in 2014. He is now a certified structure welder and in early 2015 he secured a job starting at more than $25 per hour with Erwin Industries, a company that serves the energy and industrial infrastructure markets. “I really like welding,” said Matthews. “I am able to work independently on specific projects and set my own pace.”

Matthews is now planning to return to ECC Compton Center to get the training he needs to earn another certificate for tungsten inert gas welding (known as TIG welding), which can increase his earning power to up to $35 per hour. He also has the opportunity to earn an associate of science degree in welding, and he is hopeful that he can fit the curriculum into his work schedule.

“I would like to thank Welding Instructor Pamela Richardson for her dedication to helping students succeed,” said Matthews. “She is always willing to help, works with you to improve your skills, and is excited to talk about welding any time.” In fact, Richardson recently had an 89 percent success rate in one of her welding classes, resulting in 16 students passing the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety written license exam.

Matthews has friends who also attend ECC Compton Center and he is appreciative that they suggested he enroll. The decision has paid off for a student who received his high school diploma in 2009 through adult school and wanted to secure a career that would increase his earning power.

“I’m so glad I decided to attend El Camino College Compton Center,” said Matthews. “It is a comfortable environment where everyone makes you feel at home. It’s a place where you can be successful and do what you came to do.”

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