Press Releases

La Porte Economic Advancement Partnership Announces Adult Certification Program for Welding

La Porte, IN – The La Porte Economic Advancement Partnership in conjunction with Ivy Tech Community College and New York Blower are pleased to announce a new program launching in La Porte this fall. This project is a true collaboration of efforts between numerous partners such as the La Porte Community School Corporation, Center of Workforce Innovations and the City of La Porte.

Over the past three years, LEAP’s Workforce Taskforce, working closely with our employer partners and stakeholders, have identified several areas of need within our community. We have continued to develop a network and process to bring these high demand jobs with great career potential to the forefront. There are several announcements expected in the coming months on other related initiatives to continue to skill up our workforce within the greater La Porte market.

“I have seen a change in how our stakeholders and employers interact with one another within our community since developing our network,” said Mike Riehle, President of Business Services for the La Porte Economic Advancement Partnership. “Rather than working in silos there is both a want and need to collaborate to bring incremental change to our workforce.”

This program will be for adult candidates looking to get certified in MIG/Gas Metal Arc welding. There are several employers currently hiring individuals with these qualifications in our market. There are expectations that candidates will be given the opportunity to interview with local companies currently hiring.

Aco Sikoski, Chancellor of Ivy Tech Valparaiso campus commented on the new opportunity saying, “One of our ongoing initiatives within Ivy Tech is to provide opportunities for training in areas of high need within the communities we serve. La Porte has shown great initiative to take this process to a new level and get investment from our local employer base and we will continue to do our part in providing a superior level of skills.” The need to have vested employers is critical to this process because without the buy in from our employer base these programs would not take off. Assistant Superintendent with La Porte Community School Corporation Dr. Jane Larson said, “We are excited to provide this opportunity for our non-traditional students enrolled in Virtual Learning Academy as a career pathway leading to certification and employment in La Porte.”

New York Blower has been involved in this collaboration from the beginning. Scott Hamilton, Executive Vice President of Operations of New York Blower shared, “New York Blower wanted to be part of the solution to this skills and employment gap. The best way to do that was to put our best foot forward in creating a partnership with our community to not only give us an opportunity to hire skilled workers, but our whole employer base within our area.”

The program is expected to start around November 1st and finish prior to the December holiday. All training will be done at New York Blower’s facility in La Porte. For more information or to sign up for classes please inquire at

The La Porte Economic Advancement Partnership works closely with our business community to provide both economic development support as well as chamber services to enhance our business climate in the greater La Porte area. You can learn more about how we support our business community by contacting our office at 219.324.8584.

Contact Us

Phone: 219-324-8584
Address: 605 Michigan Avenue
La Porte IN, 46350