FAIRMONT - Fairmont Area Schools has been successful in rallying businesses and individuals to create an Ag Academy, which was put in place this year - so successful, in fact, that it is trying the concept with another subject: welding.
According to Superintendent Joe Brown, so many students have signed up for the high school's welding classes, the school did not have enough welding booths to go around.
"We have seen a huge growth in students taking welding," he said.
As a result, the district reached out to local businesses, asking them to support the program with $1,000 endowments to provide additional welding booths, including at MIG wire feed welder, safety equipment, and installation of additional electrical power.
Within weeks of asking for support, the district received donations from three local business, which will have their company name and address affixed to the booth, and receive the opportunity to interview the welding students for job openings.
Brown said while the welding program is part of the vocational program at the high school that is facing cuts if the November levy doesn't pass, welding itself isn't likely to be cut.
"I would say welding is safe," he said.