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This release prepared by the Office of Public Relations and Marketing.
Rebecca Eidson, Director, 646-1507,
Lisa Garrett, Public Relations Associate, 646-1506,

Phelps, Brabham Earn Certified Welding Inspectors Status

(By Lisa Garrett)

PENDLETON ---  Two of Tri-County Technical College’s Welding faculty are now certified welding inspectors through the American Welding Society (AWS). 

Paul Phelps, program coordinator, and Scott Brabham, instructor, traveled to Troy, Ohio, in May for 10 days of certified welding inspector training through the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology and testing with the American Welding Society. 

Passing the examination earned them Certified Welding Inspector (CWI) designation, an internationally recognized certification of proficiency in weld inspection.  They also earned Certified Welding Educators credentials. 

CWI certification also will be the first step in distinguishing Tri-County as the only accredited test center in the Upstate and the second in the State.  Currently Florence is the only site in the State.

The CWI certification is widely recognized, both nationally and internationally, in the welding industry.  Successful companies have come to rely on this AWS certification when ensuring the highest level of quality workmanship.

“AWS certification allows the College to become a bigger resource for the local manufacturing sector,” said Eugene Grant, dean of the Industrial and Engineering Technology Division.  “Students will go through weld tests and following successful completion, will have the credentials to carry over to industry.” 
“This gives them a leg up in industry.  It means they have met the requirements and have the skills,” said Phelps.  “This certification is a big career step for me and Scott, and a very big deal for the College.”

Both Phelps and Brabham are alumni of the College’s Welding Department.

Phelps’ work experience includes two years as an assembly technician and diesel mechanic at Caterpillar and a year as an assembly technician at GE.  He also worked as a welder at Sulzer and worked as a fabricator/welder and as a machine operator at Saco Lowell.  He is a 2003 graduate of Tri-County's Welding Department. He is a member of the American Welding Society.

Brabham is a 2001 graduate of the Welding department and following graduation, he worked as a welder at the General Electric Gas Turbine plant in Greenville.

          For more information, contact Paul Phelps at 646-1405 or by e-mail at


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