|IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger, right, along with IAM District 751 President Jon Holden, second from left in back, stand with the newest class of IAM/Boeing Joint Apprenticeship Program graduates, front row, and representatives and others in Seattle.|
Five students in the IAM/Boeing Joint Apprenticeship Program are now journeymen.
The students graduated during a banquet held in mid-February at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. The program was established in 1935 and offers apprenticeships in several trades requiring advanced skills.
“These graduates have worked very hard over the last four or five years to master their trades,” said Gina Ames, IAM/Boeing Joint Apprenticeship Coordinator. “They’ve spent many hours of their own time in the classroom. And they’ve had the opportunity to learn from some of the highest-skilled journeymen and women in the world.”
The IAM and Boeing have been working together to train aerospace workers since 1935, a relationship that has lasted through the decades and even today – amid unpredictable economic activity, mergers and changing technology – that commitment to learning remains strong.
‘There is nothing quite like putting your fingers on it, touching it, making it real. That’s found in an apprentice program,” said IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger.
“Thanks to the work of the people in this room, we now have a backlog that is over $400 billion of aircraft,” said Alan May, Boeing Human Resource Vice President. “I don’t think about those as aircraft, I think of that as $400 billion of future job security, future career growth, future investment in our community. It’s programs like these. It’s leadership that we have jointly in union-management relations that allow us to help train people and get them into highly-productive jobs.”
Jobs like building the 737 in Renton, WA, or the 777X in Everett, WA – some of the best planes in the world, built by Machinists.
“So remember, another apprentice will now be counting on you,” said IAM District 751 President Jon Holden to the graduates, “to help them along the way, to make sure that if there’s any hurdles in front of them, you’re there to help pick them up, set them on their way, and make sure they meet every goal they try to achieve.”
For more on the IAM/Boeing Joint Apprenticeship Program, click here.