Justin Dandurand is a senior in West-MEC’s Welding Program at Central Campus in Glendale. Although he has a love of reading and education, Justin loves to be outdoors. In the future he hopes to purchase a home with property, which not only give him the space needed for his welding career, but also allow him to spend time doing some of the things he loves, like target practice and 4-wheeling. While Justin is quite self-motivated, West-MEC has given him a jump-start on his future!
Q. How did the opportunity at WEST-MEC come about?
A. The way we found out about West-MEC was through open house that was made known through my high school. My parents thought we should go check it out and I am glad we did. I was interested in a few different classes; welding and the diesel repair. I applied for both and choose welding. My grandpa was a welder and I wanted to follow in his shoes. West-MEC is an excellent opportunity, to be able to have a career at the same time you graduate from high school is great. I also liked that I was able to achieve this career without all the student loans that usually go along with getting a trade after high school.
Q. Can you tell me about the welding program?
A. In my welding program now, the class is currently working on wire fed welding. We have learned everything about arc welding and all the processes of cutting metal, such as plasma arc cutting and oxy fuel cutting. Plasma arc cutting is one of the most efficient and quickest ways to cut metal. We used plasma arc cutting to cut any material up to 3/8 inch thick. Oxy fuel cutting is a more industrial cutting process that uses oxygen and acetylene to cut metals with extreme thickness. We would use oxy fuel cutting to cut any of our work pieces so we can either start another weld or it could be used for backing bars off our v-groove which we can then bend test them and receive a certification for that position and process.
Q. Do you have any current welding projects? What do you enjoy creating most?
A. My current weld that I am working on is a 3G FCAW V groove weld. My favorite process that I have learned thus far has been arc welding with a 7018 electrode, preferably an open root weld, in any position. I currently have five certifications for welding.
Q. Are you involved in any other activities?
A. I don’t have a lot of extra time to do extra activities or projects, I have a full schedule with school and my career goals. I go to Shadow Ridge High school in the morning. I have just enough time to eat lunch, and then I go to my welding class until 4 pm. I have an evening job working at the UPS hub, unloading trucks, which I work until 10 pm. When I finish with this schedule, and I have extra time, I would like to like to build my own jeep or rock crawler from scratch.
Q. What do you do for fun?
A. I like being outdoors in my spare time. I enjoy 4-wheeling and finding new spots and scenery. On the weekends, I go up north, enjoying the weather and just being outside, camping.
Q. Where do you see yourself in ten years?
A. In the next ten years, I would ultimately like to see myself working either underwater welding around the different coasts, performing various projects for different companies, or welding on the Alaska Pipeline.
Justin Dandurand is a senior at West-MEC.