Copper Development Association Helps Train Military Veterans in United Association's HVAC Piping Program

March 29, 2012


Training Provides Career Options to Veterans

SEATTLE, WA— As soldiers return from war zones and leave the military service, they may experience difficulty readjusting to their civilian lives. Often, the most challenging task is finding permanent employment; the Department of Labor released data in March indicating that the unemployment rate among veterans who served the U.S. Armed Forces at any time since September 2001 is 8.3 percent.

The United Association (UA), a multi-craft union whose members are engaged in the fabrication, installation and servicing of piping systems, launched the Veterans in Piping (VIP) program, created in 2008, offers veterans assistance in career and lifestyle transitioning. Specifically, the program trains returning veterans for new careers in the piping industry.

In keeping with its commitment to promoting the proper use of copper materials in sustainable, efficient applications for business, industry and the home, the Copper Development Association (CDA) partnered with the UA in a VIP program training session at UA Local #32 in Seattle, Wash., on March 15 and 16.

CDA project managers Dale Powell and Wayne Seale instructed veterans in the proper installation of copper and copper alloys for HVAC applications, an industry that was completely new to many of their students. "I am honored to participate in such a unique and beneficial training program," said Powell. "Not only do the veterans benefit, but the HVAC industry will gain hard-working, passionate leaders and tradesmen to fill the gaps left by the growing retiring workforce."


The session was among the first HVAC training sessions provided by the VIP program, which originally focused on welding skills training. Powell and Seale provided the vets technical information via classroom lecture and hands-on experience soldering and brazing copper and copper alloys in the shop. CDA has a long history of partnering with the UA, recently supplying materials and judging a project for the UA's International Apprenticeship Contest.