Welding is one of the fastest-growing industries and relies extensively on skilled and trained professionals. Since welding instruction and training is typically a hands-on learning experience, the COVID-19 pandemic has not only impacted the way students learn but also the way welding trainers impart training.
From the time the world has been hit by the pandemic, welding trainers and instructors have been finding newer ways to provide suitable and sufficient training to welding students. Welding trainers had to ensure effective training on a day-to-day basis with innovative ways of training.
The advancements in welding technologies over the past few years have impacted the welding equipment, the role of welding trainers, the way the learners get trained, and more. This has also drastically improved the way metals are welded, by better understanding the speed, strength, and weld parameters.
These developments in the domain of welding have positively impacted the role of welding trainers and the way welding training is imparted. To delve deeper into this and to understand more about the critical role of a welding trainer, we caught up with Mr. Umesh Jagtap, Sr. Application Engineer – Tech Support National, Fronius India. Read on to know more…
Q: Could you please throw some light on how the welding training evolved over the years?
A: Tremendous changes have taken place in welding training in the last two decades. The advancements took place in welding products, technology, and processes which in turn impacted the welding training.
The welding associations and welding industry are actively organizing online/offline training programmes on various welding topics. Through this, various organizations can learn about new materials, advancements in welding processes, Industry 4.0, welding automation, and robotics. All of these play an important role in the ever-evolving welding training. And it is essential to growing according to the trends.
Q: With virtual welding training gaining popularity and increasing acceptance across the industry and academia, how do you think this has impacted the role of a welding trainer?
A: I would say, the job of a welding trainer has become easier, thanks to virtual welding training. The virtual welding trainers use state-of-the-art technology based on Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, and Augmented Reality. This creates more opportunities to train welders in standardized formats.
Since there is a huge demand for skilled welders in the industry, a welder trained through virtual welding technology will crucial in bridging the supply and demand gap. Though through virtual welding training, the number of trainers would be reduced, the demand will still be high for the trainers considering the market growth.
Q: With advancements in technology in welding and allied sectors, how can welding trainers be prepared to be relevant with changing times?
A: This is indeed a time for change and to upgrade the trainers to the latest technological trends. The welding association bodies are doing a fantastic job in creating awareness regarding the latest trends and technology.
By collaborating with government technical education bodies and welding machine manufacturers, the training of welding instructors can be made effective and relevant.
Also read: What industry expects from welding trainers? – https://www.nationalskillsnetwork.in/what-industry-expects-from-welding-trainers/
Q: What would be some of the ways we can together make welding an aspirational career for both the learners and instructors?
A: Since, welding is one of the most important processes/activities in manufacturing, by collaborating with the industries, welding organizations, and institutes, we can create and develop some aspirational careers both for learners and instructors.
This is the first interview in the series on welding trainers. You can read the second interview here – https://www.nationalskillsnetwork.in/the-evolving-role-of-welding-trainers-part-2/
Q: How important is industry experience and exposure for a welding instructor?
A: Industry exposure is crucial for welding instructors to correlate the actual field condition with the topics. In fact, the field is the greatest trainer. Field exposure will certainly enhance the instructors’ skillsets and knowledge to transfer the technology as well as a deep understanding of the topic.