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Student Success: Sam Munden, Welding Technology

Welding Technology Diploma ’16

Sam Munden decided to enroll in the Welding Technology program at College of The Albemarle (COA) after attending an open house. “I started off by seeing the welding lab. Mike Lopes, the instructor, was telling us all about the program and it appealed to me because of the pay, benefits and retirement options with less than a year of training,” he explained. Munden got started in the program and obtained all three degree options in Welding Technology that COA offers: the Basic Certificate in December 2014, the Certificate Level II in May 2016 and the Welding Technology Diploma in July 2016.

Munden began working at Sumitomo Drive Technologies in January 2017. “Mr. Lopes had emailed me and told me there could be a job opportunity here, so I came up for an interview.” He started as Welder Apprentice, welding small weldments and running the plasma table. He was promoted to Welder Fitter I in 2018 and passed Sumitomo’s weld certificate program, allowing him to weld steel housings, baseplates and motor lanterns. Munden was promoted to Welder/Fitter II in April 2019.

When asked about his experience in the program at COA, Munden shared, “I would 100 percent recommend the program to anyone who wants to work with their hands. It’s an awesome program and they taught me everything I needed to know, welding-wise. I felt completely prepared when I started working. The choice I made to go to COA was definitely the right choice for me.”