Consolidated Addresses Skills Gap: Partners With Shawsheen Valley Technical High School

Arthur Trapotsis
Written by: Arthur Trapotsis

MS Biochemical Engineering, MBA, Consultant

Advanced Manufacturing Training Program offers continued education in welding processes for motivated students.

May 29, 2019 (BILLERICA, Mass) — Shawsheen Valley Technical High School (founded in 1970) has proudly served communities throughout Middlesex County by providing students with a world-class vocational and technical education. With Consolidated Sterilizer Systems newly relocated to Billerica, MA, and in need of trained welders, it was a natural fit to partner with Shawsheen to train and hire welders.

Shawsheen’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Program offers a fantastic continuing education class in welding that covers such topics as welding processes, welding mathematics and pattern drafting, and tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding. Consolidated was happy to play a small role in the design of the curriculum as well as enroll one of its employees into the program.

According to Andrew Pigeon, Director of Community Services & Post-Secondary Programs, “The program enables individuals to challenge themselves to learn new skills and work toward learning a variety of industry-based skills they can apply toward their careers in advanced manufacturing.”

Over the course of the 5-month program, students learn how to do the following:

  • Examine and perform liquid penetrant tests on their welds
  • Critique welds and troubleshoot to improve basic fabrication
  • Demonstrate the gas metal arc welding process (GMAW)
  • Identify GMAW safety procedures
  • Set up equipment for GMAW operations
  • Form a weld bead using GMAW



In addition to spending 20 hours in the Metal Fabrication Shop area completing hands-on training and academic competencies, students also take technical math and blueprint reading courses through Middlesex Community College and earn a 10-hour OSHA certification.

“This opportunity provides mature students with a chance to utilize Shawsheen’s state-of-the-art equipment and welding fabrication shop, allowing them to train on a variety of current industry-standard equipment and preparing them for entry into today’s manufacturing and fabrication workforce,” said Pigeon.

One of those students is Consolidated Sterilizer Systems’ very own Eric Gonzalez. A welder at CSS for the last 18 months, Gonzalez is currently attending Shawsheen’s Advanced Manufacturing Training Program to familiarize himself with the GTAW/TIG welding technique to keep up with manufacturing industry demands.

“When I heard about the program, I figured that enrolling would be a smart way to both increase my skills and to help the company (CSS) keep up with incoming orders,” said Gonzalez.  “I feel like I’ve gained a lot from the experience — Shaw Tech supplies everything you could possibly need to develop these skills.”

Consolidated, along with the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium, MassHire Metro North, MassHire Lowell Career Center and Middlesex Community College, is proud to support Shawsheen’s dedicated effort to provide individuals with the hands-on welding experience they need to excel in the manufacturing industry and to drive sustained employability in the commonwealth.

About CSS

Consolidated Sterilizer Systems has manufactured steam sterilizers (autoclaves) in the USA since 1946. Through years of research and development, their products have satisfied leading academic, healthcare, food, and biotechnology facilities around the globe. Customers worldwide come to Consolidated because their product line offers the best price, functionality and predictable quality in the industry. Consolidated markets and sells its products in over 70 countries through qualified sales teams and manufacturer sales representatives.

Media Contact
Arthur Trapotsis
Consolidated Sterilizer Systems
617-782-6072 ext. 2200
[email protected]