Baltimore Apprentice Wins Top Honors at International Contest
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 6, 2017
UA Communications Director
410-279-7893 – firstname.lastname@example.org
The United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry (UA) recently held their 64th annual weeklong Instructor Training Program (ITP) at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The week was focused on training instructors in the trades who teach apprentices and continuing education to the UA’s more than 343,000 members. The week was highlighted by an international contest of industry apprentices from the United States, Canada and Australia.
Through a series of state, district and regional competitions, 32 of the more than 43,000 current UA apprentices from the United States, Canada and Australia earned the right to compete in five different skills tests. These tests were categorized into 5 specific trades and the competition spanned 5 full days of intense work on complex projects within the specified field.
Baltimore’s own Plumbers and Steamfitters UA Local 486 is honored to announce that their apprentice, Sean Dobbs, 32, of Street, Maryland, won the distinction as the recipient of the Allyn Parmenter and George Bliss Award. This award is the top honor of all apprentices in the contest and is given to the participant who exhibits outstanding qualities such as leadership, commitment, determination and work ethic. Sean received the award at the annual ITP Completion Ceremony which marks the graduation of UA instructors from North America and Australia. Over 2,400 UA members, contractors, industry representatives, families and others were on hand for the week-long events and graduation.
“We could not be more proud of Sean,” said Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 486 Business Manager Will Welsh. “He is tremendously skilled in the trade and is certain to have a successful future in this industry. We are looking forward to working with him in the years ahead as he hones his craft and embarks on his career.”
United Association General President Mark McManus addressed to the apprentices and ITP graduates at the Completion Ceremony, calling the members and apprentices the backbone and the future of the organization. “You are truly the leaders of the future,” he told the group of young tradesmen. “Our challenge – your challenge – is to produce the world’s best craftsmen and women.” After the event he added, “This was a top-notch group of apprentices. The skills they exhibited during the contest show the strength of our training program. To have this skill level so early in their careers is a testament of their dedication and commitment to their trade.”
United States Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta was the guest speaker at the ceremony. Secretary Acosta has supported apprenticeship programs as a tactic to close the nation’s skilled trade gap. He praised the apprentices and their pursuance to become a skilled tradesperson. Acosta noted there are 6.2 million open jobs in the nation, many of them that cannot be filled because of a shortage of trained skilled tradespeople. He noted that apprentices are the future of rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure.
“You will be profoundly impacting their lives and, by extension, their communities,” Acosta said to the audience. “That’s awesome.”
Plumbers perform work that is essential to the health and safety of our citizens. Plumbers install drinking water, waste and ventilating systems in homes, offices, schools, hospitals and manufacturing facilities. With a growing focus on green technologies, water conservation and energy efficiency, the demand for plumbers will increase significantly in the years ahead.
Steamfitters fabricate, assemble, install, maintain, and repair piping systems that transport all types of fluids, slurries and gas in the residential, commercial and industrial sectors. Their work is diverse and in fields such as oil refineries, paper mills, nuclear power plants, manufacturing plants, and in the automotive industry. Pipefitters and Steamfitters often work on high pressure and high temperature systems, requiring a thorough knowledge of scientific principles to complete the work safely.
Founded in 1889, the United Association of Plumbers, Pipefitters, Sprinklerfitters, Welders and HVAC Technicians (UA) is a multi-craft union whose members are engaged in the fabrication, installation and servicing of piping systems. There are over 343,000 members belonging to more than 275 local unions in the United States and Canada.
Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 486 was established in 1995 by the consolidation of Plumbers Local 48 and Steamfitters Local 438 representing nearly 2,000 union-trained plumbers and steamfitters. Members are highly trained craftsmen who fabricate, install and service piping systems. They may be found on jobsites involving single-family homes, garden and high-rise apartment buildings, large and small office buildings, power plants, chemical installations, factories, public buildings and health care facilities. Local 486 is an important resource for contractors and owners. The organization provides an ample supply of highly trained labor, matching any size project need or skill requirement, including welding and specialty crafts such as hazardous materials handling and medical gas piping. Our goal is to insure the job is done right the first time, on budget and on time.