California PILMA Delegation Visits Santa Clara Sheet Metal Training Center
Sheet Metal Workers Local 104’s Joint Apprenticeship Training Center in Santa Clara recently hosted a tour by a delegation of pharmaceutical industry executives and California labor leaders from PILMA.
The tour showcased the training that members of the Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA) undergo to prepare them to master various welding specialties and unique technical skills that are essential in the construction of specialized structures such as cleanrooms, fume hoods and other critical components of modern pharmaceutical production facilities.
Graduates of the SMWIA apprenticeship program master every aspect of the industry, but many gravitate toward the challenging specialties of modern high tech construction.
In partnership with its signatory contractors, the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors of North America, SMWIA maintains one of the most rigorous craft training programs in the nation and the Santa Clara Center is one of the most advanced of the union’s 165 training centers.
The Santa Clara center features a 50,000 sq. ft. facility housing 11 classrooms with the latest in computer and audiovisual training aids. The center contains a design lab where students work with the latest computer aided design (CAD) software and building planning technologies.
SMWIA graduates are well versed not only in their craft and skills, but also and the latest developments in energy efficiency concepts, Green/LEED construction and highly efficient systems integrating all construction processes through Building Industry Management (BIM)—ensuring end users the best value for their construction dollar.
Tour participants included Patty Cooper, executive director of the California Biotechnology Foundation, Jennifer Fitzgerald of Amgen, Merrill Jacobs of PhRMA, Donna Kaylor of Pfizer, Travis Miller of Bay-Bio, Bob Balgenorth of the California Building and Construction Trades and Scott Carstairs, of Therma, a SMACNA contractor.