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22
2/22/2015 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM
9290

Cultural Cuisine 2015

Join us Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015 for endless cultural hors d'oeuvres prepared by our Culinary Arts students. 

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2/28/2015 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
26692

College Goal Wisconsin

Saturday, Feb. 28 | Get free, on-site professional experience completing the FAFSA.

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123
3/3/2015 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
28035

3/3 Easy Start Session

Tuesday, March 3, 5 p.m., Appleton. Learn about Fast Forward grant programs, then complete all your admissions requirements in one visit.

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45
3/5/2015 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
20445

3/5: On Campus: UW-Green Bay

Thinking of transferring to UW-Green Bay? 

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67
3/7/2015 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
8884

Discovery Day

Want to visit us in person? Attend Discovery Day to experience campus life at FVTC.

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11
3/11/2015 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
26690

Explore Starting a Business, Appleton

Learn the three critical things you must do to launch and sustain a business.

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1314
3/14/2015 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
26256

Cooking Demo: Meatless Moments

Saturday, March 14 | Don’t let meatless fool you! Many are surprised when they have an opportunity to see and taste how great these foods can be.

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21
3/20/2015 - 3/21/2015
22796

Sewing & Quilting Expo

14th annual Sewing & Quilting Expo, Friday & Saturday, March 20 & 21, Oshkosh Riverside Campus

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27
3/23/2015 - 3/27/2015
28
3/28/2015 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
6021

Garden Talk

Learn gardening tips from the experts! Saturday, March 28

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Manufacturing

Welding & Metal Fabrication

Welding & Metal Fabrication

Spring 2013

Mar 1, 2013

A Door-Opening Experience

Grad Wade Wheaton used his Welding & Metal Fabrication skills to open doors for a new career.

When the paper mill where Wade Wheaton worked for 29 years shut down, he didn’t despair. Unlike other older workers, this 51-year-old Shiocton resident decided to start a new chapter in his life and enrolled in Fox Valley Technical College’s Welding and Metal Fabrication program. “I’ve always believed that when one door closes, another one opens,” he says.

Today, Wheaton enjoys his new job as a millwright for the Boldt Company, one of the largest professional construction services firms in the nation. “I do a little bit of everything—welding, fixing equipment, installing machinery, and more,” explains Wheaton. “I love the diversity.”

When he started at FVTC, Wheaton found that using the latest high-tech equipment was a bit intimidating. “In my generation, there were no computers. I learned how to lay concepts out with a pencil on a drafting table,” he says. “I was afraid of computers, but once I got more used to them, the experience was exciting and impressive. The program at Fox Valley Tech increased my knowledge ten-fold.”

Wheaton appreciates the way the welding program is structured. “It gives you a broad range of skills while also teaching job and work ethics,” he says. “The instructors are knowledgeable and very patient. They treat you as an individual.” As a program intern, Wheaton mentored other students, put together teams for a state competition, and helped establish the welding club. “Teaching others was an awesome experience,” he says. “I’m also proud of winning the state welding and fabrication competition at Skills USA.”

The best advice that Wheaton offers to others who have suffered similar career setbacks is to never give up. “Even if you’re 40 or 50, go out there and do it.”

By the Numbers:

  • 90%+ graduate employment rate for graduates of Fox Valley Technical College’s welding programs*
  • 125 full-time job openings in northeast Wisconsin for welders and metal fabricators*
  • $38,000 annual average salary for welders in the region after just one-two years of training**
  • 40% average salary increase for all FVTC grads after five years in the workforce*

*2012 FVTC Graduate Employment Research Report
** 2011 Manufacturing Index Survey – Northeastern Wisconsin Manufacturing Alliance