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CTE Success Story: Cumberland County Tech’s Kim Harvey began welding career prior to high school graduation

March 7, 2024

CTE Month Success Story: Kim Harvey, Cumberland County Technical Education Center Welding Class of 2023 Harvey is currently an operator with JD Machine Parts, a company she initially joined as a student and maintained a relationship with throughout her senior year as part of the School to Work program.Kim Harvey did not enroll in Cumberland County Technical Education Center (CCTEC) with intent to study welding. But, after becoming acquainted with the field, she was hooked.

“This path was not something I had ever thought of until CCTEC,” Harvey said. Once she was accepted into the high school, she remembers “absolutely clinging to welding and completely immersing myself in the trade.”

She especially enjoyed learning new skills while practicing them right in the school’s career classroom on the same tools used in the real world. “I could learn while working and welding, especially the CNC part of working with metal,” Harvey added. “I adapted fairly quickly to the machinery and operating and began to feel comfortable that this career path was something that would be engaging; I could gain knowledge and continue to learn.”

Today, Harvey is a set-up employee and operator with JD Machine Parts in Rosenhayn. She initially joined the company prior to her senior year at CCTEC to gain real-world experience. Already established there, Harvey continued working at JD Machine Parts throughout her senior year as part of the School to Work program, which supports students in gaining work-based learning to help them continue honing important technical and professional skills.

In her role with JD Machine Parts, Harvey sets up jobs that come through the Lathe Department (where machines fabricate metal for manufacturing) on the CNC machines, which are computer numerical control machines used in manufacturing. She is responsible for removing or replacing tools for each job and running or adjusting the job according to the print provided. She also plays an important role in quality control with all three machines in the Lathe Department.

“I use so many skills inherited from CCTEC, such as attention to detail, math using fractions and decimals, knowledge of machines and tools that were in the school’s welding shop, and more,” said Harvey.

In addition, Harvey graduated in2023 from CCTEC with important certifications from the American Welding Society like AWS D1.1, a structural welding code; and AWS sense level 1, for entry-level welders. She also obtained OSHA 10 certification.

“These gave me an advantage over others when I started. I had a solid foundation for my future career,” Harvey said.

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