Clark College welding program selling students’ 2017 project online as fundraiser
VANCOUVER — For three months this spring, students from Clark College’s welding classes worked tirelessly to create a 14-foot aluminum skiff from scratch. Now the welding program is selling the skiff online to raise funds for future class projects.
As part of the college’s commitment to hands-on learning, for the past three years welding students have completed a completely functional welding project before graduation in the spring. One year it was a pressure vessel; the next, it was an aluminum skiff. That project proved so popular with students that Professor Caleb White decided to bring it back for 2017, albeit with many improvements over the original design.
This year’s boat is 14 feet long and features storage under each seat, an anchor locker, a drain plug, fore and aft tie-downs, handles for lifting the aft end, and a bow tie-down for anchoring to a trailer. The boat was tested this spring on Lake Lacamas and found to be completely sealed and usable.
“It’s a small boat that is versatile enough to be used on lakes or rivers, and is very stable for a boat of this size,” said White, who worked at Christensen Shipyards for a decade before coming to Clark to teach. “It doesn’t currently have an outboard motor, but it is designed to use up to a 25-horsepower outboard.”
Anyone interested in purchasing the boat may bid for it online at https://www.publicsurplus.com/sms/all,wa/auction/view?auc=1977227. Proceeds from the sale will go toward purchasing raw materials for the welding program’s 2018 spring project. Materials for this year’s boat cost approximately $1,500, and some 20 students contributed more than 1,000 hours of labor to complete it.
Located in Vancouver’s Central Park and serving up to 12,000 students per quarter, Clark College is Washington State’s second-largest single-campus, for-credit community college. The college currently offers classes at two satellite locations: one on the Washington State University Vancouver campus and one in the Columbia Tech Center in East Vancouver. Additionally, its Economic & Community Development program is housed in the Columbia Bank building in downtown Vancouver.