To celebrate the College’s 50th anniversary, Northeast State is welcoming retired and former faculty members back to campus during the month of February. The College also spotlights current faculty members making a difference in the lives of students.
Jeremy Maskew has been a full-time faculty member in the College’s Welding/Metal Fabrication program since 2011. A U.S. Navy veteran, Maskew is also a Northeast State alumnus who graduated with honors.
What was your experience when you enrolled at Northeast State?
I will a little nervous because I was older than most of the students. I served four years in the Navy where I began welding. When I got here I found out I didn’t know quite as much about welding as I thought I did. I liked the instructors, the college, and the program. I applied myself and wound up graduating with a high grade point average.
How did you begin teaching at Northeast State?
I passed my welding test for the first job I applied to and was hired. Former Welding instructor Charlie Bloomer gave me the chance to teach welding classes at the Regional Center Advanced Manufacturing in Kingsport as an adjunct faculty member. I took him up on it and spent about two and a half years as an adjunct before becoming full-time in August 2011.
What must students know after earning a welding degree or certificate?
What I try to get them to understand is they must pass a welding test to show their skills. No matter if you earn a degree or certification, you must be able to pass a welding test as part of the application to get a job. We try to get them the most experience by applying the skills we teach. I have the students going for the degree to weld and fabricate a tool box. It requires a long-term effort of putting what you have learned to practical use demanded in the workforce.
What do most people not know about welding and metal fabrication?
The time, frustration, and practice to develop the skills to become a good welder. The skill and art to it requires focus, muscle memory, and good hand-to-eye coordination.
Why should students interested in welding or metal fabrication enroll at Northeast State?
We are the only two-year institution in the state that offers a two-year degree in welding and metal fabrication. The degree program is broad to teach communication skills, simple shop mathematics, and increase overall knowledge. If they plan to go forward to be pipe fitters or fabricators, they need to learn some more complex math skills to do the job.