Instructors and Training Coordinators come Together for 2023 JAC
Insulators International Staff — Fri, Oct 6, 2023 @ 10:10 AM
Instructors and Training Coordinators from across the U.S. and Canada gathered in Houston for the 2023 Joint Apprentice Conference (JAC) for multiple days of collaboration and learning.
Led by IIIATF Administrator John L. Stahl, most of the training segments were led by members of the IIIAFT Steering Committee.
When not meeting in a joint session with the neighboring Local Union Officers Meeting, the JAC agenda focused on improving the training and development of the JATC programs across the International.
HFIAW Energy assessment and quality assurance Director Josh Sherrard delivered a presentation on the 3E and Building Design Guide, showcasing innovative approaches to energy efficiency and building design within the industry, and how the Insulators Union fits into this equation.
Representatives from Knauf, Rockwool and Armacell all spoke to the JAC attendees, sharing information about what is new with their insulation products and how they can fit into the needs of the International.
The representative from Armacell also brought a set of custom knives that were presented during the event-ending dinner dance to the MAC winner.
Representatives from Linked Union also addressed the JAC. They discussed the recently launched Insulators Mobile App with help from Local 34 Minneapolis Training Coordinator Eric Houske, who helped demonstrate how the app will work.
Training coordinators from various Locals, including Jim Hoos from Local 24 Washington D.C., Brian Kinsman from Local 7 Seattle/Anchorage, Houske and Eliseo Aleman from Local 19 Milwaukee, presented on different ways they are integrating new technology into the classroom and the importance of embracing technological advancements to enhance the learning experience for apprentices.
The first day concluded with a hands-on layout session led by Local 17 Chicago Trainer Ben Frank, Local 16 San Francisco Training Coordinator Jonathan Blaine, Local 17 Training Coordinator Sean Craven and Local 14 Philadelphia Trainer Matt McDowell.
The layout work provided attendees with practical experience that can help further hone their skills when it comes to teaching some of the more complex metal layouts.
"The JAC Conference and MAC Competition attendees have become an extended family,” Houske said. “We meet annually to share ideas, knowledge and training techniques, especially with the overwhelmed new coordinators. We were all there once and felt the same way until that veteran Apprenticeship Coordinator spotted you and offered a lifeline of assistance and friendship, which you will cherish along the way.”
Before rejoining the Local Union Officers in the afternoon, the trainers completed a morning session with presentations on recruitment, training center improvements and classroom contact hours.
The morning began with a presentation from BMA Media Group representatives Sara Park and Tom Germuska. The pair provided updates on the different videos and related apprentice recruitment tools that were created for all JATCs in the past years. They also answered questions about the use of new technology and how various tools can be customized for every JATC.
A group of Training Coordinators followed by sharing a slide show that highlighted various new or renovated training centers. The coordinators discussed their respective centers, and explained how they use the space and equipment in their facilities to train their different apprentice classes.
This was followed by a panel discussion on classroom contact hours structure. Featured panel participants included Local 16 Training Coordinator Jonathan Blaine, Local 110 Edmonton Training Coordinator Dan Anette, Local 14 Training Coordinator Edward Krawczyk and Local 12 New York Training Coordinator Joe Rodgers.
The discussion focused on optimizing the classroom experience for all apprentices.
The 2023 JAC provided a valuable platform for collaboration, knowledge sharing and strategic planning among coordinators and instructors.
“Every year, the Steering Committee raises the baron the peer training happening at the JAC, and this year is no exception,” Stahl said. “I am excited to see how the different Locals embrace and incorporate new technology into their training.”
We thank the IIIATF Steering Committee members who work tirelessly to make every year’s event a success.