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For Immediate Release


Welding Expands to 2nd High School

The college recently expanded its high-school based welding program to a second Catawba County high school.

This fall, students at Bandys High School could enroll in welding classes offered by CVCC at the high school.

The Bandys expansion builds on the success of CVCC’s first welding program collaboration with the Catawba County Schools offered at St. Stephens High School. Last year, eight students graduated with their high school diploma and a college certificate in welding. Two of them are now enrolled at CVCC full time.  

Both collaborations are the brainchild of Karen Cale, Catawba County Schools Director of Career and Technical Education; Roxy Poovey, CVCC Public School Liaison, and Randy Caudill, CVCC Industrial Technologies Department Head.

“This is a great example of how both educational systems think outside the box,” said Poovey. “It illustrates how we are thinking smarter in lean budget situations.” No additional funds were budgeted by either system, but somehow, they made it happen.

Kale said that the high school repurposed a building formerly used for woodworking and reallocated idle equipment from other programs.

“We received tremendous support from within Catawba County Schools, including Principal Todd Black, Superintendent Glenn Barger, and County Schools Maintenance Supervisor Rick Sain,” Cale said. “Without their willingness to stretch, it would not have happened.”

Teaching the welding certificate at the high school achieves multiple goals, Poovey explained. High school students get an opportunity to experience college-level work for a technical occupation and earn credentials that make them immediately employable. Students and parents save nearly $1,700 in tuition, fees, books, clothing and equipment while earning 18 hours of college credit.

Caudill, whose instructional responsibilities includes welding, automotive, heating and refrigeration and machining, said that he is contacted regularly by industry seeking qualified welding candidates.

He pointed out that the expansion also put a highly successful CVCC graduate back in the workforce.

“Mark Sigmon, who graduated last year with multiple degrees, teaches our program at Bandys,” said Caudill. “Over the summer, Mark went above and beyond to get the facility up and running.”

For more information about the welding program or other technical career training at CVCC, contact Randy Caudill at 828-327-7000, ext. 4561, or

Pictured from left are Bandys High School students Doug Reyburn, Logan Manley, Ryan Eades, Brandon Pope, Zach Whisnant, Andrew Hughes and Peter Guiraud.


2550 US HIGHWAY 70 SE • HICKORY, NC • 28602-8302 • 828.327.7000
Updated 10.30.2008: Administrator