Thanks to a $270,000 infusion in grant monies from the Ironworker Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust (IMPACT), apprentices from 35 Iron Worker training facilities across North America will display superior craftsmanship and skills in ornamental ironworking. These IMPACT grants funded production of all-new ornamental mockup packages, designed to facilitate a hands-on ornamental training curriculum for apprentices and journeymen.
“These mockups are an excellent introduction for apprentices and journeymen who haven’t ever looked at ornamental or architectural work before. Now Ironworkers learn before they arrive on the jobsite and can deliver a flawless product the first time,” said Ray Dean, Director of the Department of Ornamental, Architectural and Miscellaneous Metals for the Iron Workers. The mockups represent three different kinds of curtainwall installation: pressure wall, storefront and two-sided structural glazing.
IMPACT produced 50 first-generation mockups in 2004. The current update includes a 9x9 aluminum extrusion, swinging door, glass, structural glazing, small-scale storefront and other glass components.
Russ Gschwind, Apprenticeship Coordinator at Local Union No. 63, Chicago, has utilized the mockups as a required part of his training center’s apprenticeship since the first packages shipped in 2004. “Some of our guys have only worked on steel—so what do they do once a contractor is ready to put in windows? Hands-on training at our training facility gives Ironworkers the ability to switch over to ornamental seamlessly,” he explained.
Dean added that the wide availability of ornamental mock-ups comes as a valuable improvement in ornamental training compared to years past. “We have always had a tremendous manual, but we needed a consistent, hands-on approach. As a result of these mockups, the Ironworkers now offer standardized, hands-on ornamental training.”
According to Kevin Hilton, IMPACT CEO, the mockups represent yet another step in increased competitiveness, which translates to on-time, on budget projects for Contractors and Owners. “Our guys are professionals, and when our Contractors hire trained, highly skilled Ironworkers, they save time and money—and they gain a competitive edge,” Hilton said. “The question for Contractors and Owners now is: ‘Can you afford not to hire a highly trained Ironworker for your next project?’”
About the Iron Workers Union: The International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers (IABSO&RIW) was founded in 1896 in Pittsburgh, Penn. They now represent more than 125,000 Ironworkers throughout the United States and Canada. The IABSO&RIW’s mission is to improve the working conditions of its members while promoting constructive relationships with their employers to increase work opportunities.
About IMPACT: The Ironworker Management Progressive Action Cooperative Trust (IMPACT), affiliated with the Iron Workers Union, is a labor-management partnership designed to create work opportunities in the North American ironworking industry. Our primary mission is to provide a forum for Ironworkers and signatory contractors to discuss effective strategies aimed to expand job opportunities through innovative labor-management cooperative programs. IMPACT provides expertise in training, construction certifications, marketing, construction project tracking and bidding, insurance and Davis-Bacon compliance efforts. IMPACT also administers a world-class substance abuse program to ensure that Ironworkers are safe, drug-free and ready to work.