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4/27/2016 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
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Speaker Series: Gregory Feith

Wednesday, April 27, 11:30 a.m. | Gregory Feith is a former Senior Air Safety Investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board

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4/28/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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4/30/2016 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
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Aviation Fly-In & Open House

Either fly in or drive in for breakfast and explore the aviation training hangar and labs, visit with faculty and try out our full-motion Redbird flight simulators. If you're considering a career in aviation, this event is for you!

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5/2/2016
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Open Registration for Summer Term

Community registration for Summer 2016 classes starts Monday, May 2.

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5/3/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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On Campus: Grand Canyon University

Thinking of transferring to Grand Canyon University?

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5
5/5/2016 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
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On Campus: Lakeland College

Thinking of transferring to Lakeland College?
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5/10/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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On Campus: Herzing University

Thinking of transferring to Herzing University?

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5/12/2016 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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5/14/2016 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
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Cooking Demo: Explore the Many Flavors of Chicken

Explore the Many Flavors of Chicken | Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m. - Noon

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15
5/15/2016 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
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Spring Commencement Ceremony

Congratulations, Graduates!

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5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
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5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
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5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
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5/16/2016 - 5/20/2016
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5/21/2016 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
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FVTC Classic to Current Car & Motorcycle Show

Saturday, May 21, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., J.J. Keller Transportation Center, Appleton Campus

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6/4/2016 8:00 AM - 1:00 PM
48643

Bark in the Park at FVTC

Enjoy a stroll through FVTC's trails with your furry friend! 

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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