Sydney High School’s welding classes provide career development while supporting the community

SIDNEY, MT (KUMV) – People learn more than just the general subjects in school these days. Students at Sydney High School are getting the chance to get their hands dirty as they prepare for the future and support their community.

The Sydney High School shop building is where students exchange their books for welding tools and torches.

“I think it’s a lot of fun. There’s a lot of fabrication involved in making something that you create in your mind,” senior Carson Borg said.

This welding table was originally built by Carson Borg, who will use it for his work on the ranch.

“It’s a big, big 4′ x 8′, stands 52-inches off the ground. Just something to have a workspace for turning, cutting metal and things like that,” Borg said.

Students also use their skills for community projects. Using a plasma cutter, Colten Dahl creates signs to be displayed in various city parks.

“You really get involved and it feels like you’re doing something important,” Dall said.

Some wanted to take this elective because it was interesting. Peyton Nelson developed an interest in welding from the classroom and is ready to attend Western Welding Academy next year to pursue a career in the field.

“It gives me something to work on during the day. This is what I am interested in. It’s a lot of fun and a great experience to have,” Nelson said.

The welding program has been led by ag teacher Colin Gartner for 15 years. He says having a shop class allows students to discover talents in in-demand careers.

“It’s really rewarding when someone goes to VOTEC school or graduate school and studies welding or ag mechanics,” Gartner said.

The course also provides dual credit opportunities with Miles Community College in Miles City.

The class also built a sandblaster for Richland County as well as panel trailers for the fairgrounds.

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