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Workforce


Training Engineers so They’re Ready and Set to Go on Day One


Finding the right engineer with the right skills is oſten a difficult feat for companies in the advanced manufacturing industry. Even harder to find are welding engineers ready for automated welding applications in manufacturing. Many engineers graduate from college unprepared for the real world demands of a specialized field. One company that has taken a proactive approach to equip


the next generation of engineers with skills that match their needs before a job offer is ARC Specialties (Houston, TX). A


Chris Kahlich Technical Writer ARC Specialties Houston, TX


manufacturing facility. By working side-by-side with students, Allford and ARC engineers have been able to train students for the challenges and requirements that would await them if they choose a career in advanced manufacturing. Glumac was a robot driver and a chief engineer for his


team during high school, and a volunteer for US FIRST robot- ics during college. Glumac and Allford undoubtedly crossed paths many times at robot competitions, though they did not know each other at the time. Allford had recent success with


ARC Specialties has spent years cultivating future engineers through involvement in students’ academic careers.


designer and builder of automated manufacturing systems, many of which wind up in the oil patch, the company has spent years cultivating future engineers through involvement in high school and college students’ academic careers. Tis proactive approach includes mentoring US FIRST Robotics Competition high school teams, donating automated welding systems to universities, and helping promising candidates with internships and scholarships. Ithamar Glumac, 23, is one of the latest new hires at ARC


Specialties that proves the approach is working. Glumac is a welding engineer from LeTourneau University, one of only a handful of universities with a welding engineering program. ARC Specialties had success finding welding engineers


from LeTourneau, but identified that students would be more prepared for Day One in their careers if they had access to an actual automated welding system on which they could gain hands-on experience. Te company donated one of its systems to the university, and Glumac was one of the first wave of students with access to the new resource. ARC contacted university professors for input on prom-


ising students interested in a career in automated welding. Glumac was one candidate mentioned, but he stood out not only because of experience with the donated welding system, but also because of his involvement in the US FIRST Robotics competitions throughout high school and colleges. For years, president of ARC Specialties Dan Allford has


worked with US FIRST robotic teams as a sponsor and a mentor by hosting robot-building workshops at ARC’s main


hiring another engineer that was from a robotics team spon- sored by ARC Specialties, so when he learned that Glumac was also involved in robotics competitions, he knew Glumac fit the model. Glumac interned with ARC Specialties in the summer


before his final semester at LeTourneau. During his intern- ship, Glumac continued R&D work started by ARC on a new method that could change the way manufacturers test weld quality, and decrease rework of parts with defective welds. Glumac’s research focused on analyzing cross-sections


of welds, and calculating a ratio of the area of all inclu- sions found in the analyzed area in relation to the total area analyzed. Te ratio is called the IR number, or inclusion ratio number. Glumac was able to quantify how much margin of error exists within the welding practices that created a weld. Basically, if a cliff ’s edge was failure and welding a bad part was falling off that cliff, the IR number quantified how far away from the cliff ’s edge manufacturers stood using their current welding practices. Te goal is to replace typical indus- try practices that only produce pass/fail results. Impressed with Glumac’s tenacity, ARC granted him a


scholarship at the end of his internship. In his final semester, Glumac continued his IR number research between classes. In November of 2012, ARC invited Glumac to join the company at the FABTECH Weld Show in Las Vegas to give a presenta- tion on the progress in his research. Upon graduating, Glumac accepted a job with ARC as a welding engineer in the com- pany’s engineering and consulting services division.


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