ONEONTA, ALA. – Chris Posey grew up welding in his father’s shop in Nectar and never lost the love for the profession.
Posey is now sharing his welding expertise and passion to Wallace State-Oneonta students as the campus’ welding instructor.
“I love doing this. I love it because the program is new and it’s a new opportunity for me. I’m interested to see how this program grows and to grow along with it,” said Posey, 39, a Wallace State welding graduate.
Students can complete a welding certificate at the Oneonta campus in four semesters in addition to earning other welding certifications and an associate’s degree.
The Wallace State-Oneonta welding facility was completed during the beginning of the spring semester and features 10 booths with state-of-the-art equipment, including Lincoln PowerWave technology welding machines and Lincoln Electric fume extractor arm systems in each booth, allowing each student to work in a safer and cleaner welding environment.
Wallace State Welding Department Chair Jim Thompson was Posey’s instructor in Hanceville and is proud to see Posey teach students in Oneonta.
“Chris (Posey) is a great representative of our program, and I love the enthusiasm he has shown as we’ve started the program in Oneonta. Chris has put in a lot of extra effort by promoting the welding program to area high schools and businesses. He’s going to be a huge asset for the program,” Thompson said.
David West, 19, was one of the first students to enroll in the Oneonta welding program and is pleased with his decision.
“I absolutely love what I’m learning. I’ve been interested in welding for a while and didn’t think I could pass up this opportunity,” said West, who drives to Oneonta from Pinson.
Posey’s father owned Posey Welding in Nectar for 47 years, and Chris Posey began tinkering with welding as young as 9 years old.
Posey earned an associate’s degree in electronic engineering from Snead State after graduating from Oneonta High in 1996 and transferred to Auburn University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science.
While at Auburn, Posey also pursued his love of music, which he continues today as the lead singer of the Chris Posey Band. Posey and his bandmates perform across the state in their spare time, singing what Posey refers to as “Americana” music.
After spending 14 years in Auburn, Posey returned home and decided to tune up his welding skills by attending Wallace State. He completed the program in 2011 and worked for various companies before accepting the instructor role in Oneonta.
Posey is excited to share the welding knowledge he has gained with Wallace State-Oneonta students.
“It’s just as important to be in the classroom and understand the science behind it as it is to go weld. You have to know what you are doing and how to control it,” Posey said. “There are plenty of business and industries in this area that can use certified welders coming from our department. I want to see this program grow to the point where need 10 more booths than what we have.”
Added Thompson: “Having welding classes available in Oneonta is going to benefit the area. It’s going to help train students out of high school or retain those already in industry looking to gain better employment or higher-wage jobs,” Thompson said.
If you are interested in the Wallace State-Oneonta welding program, you are encouraged to contact 205.625.4020.
Online fall registration is underway for the 2017 fall semester at Wallace State-Oneonta. Students can register here: http://www.wallacestate.edu/register-now
For more information about Wallace State, visit www.wallacestate.edu.
Staff Writer, Communications and Marketing
Wallace State Community College
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