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Marine Welding Training Program Grows Skilled Workforce

man welding the side of a boat

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Armstrong Marine manufactures custom-designed aluminum boats. Based in Port Angeles, Washington, the company has around 50 employees.

Located in the north Olympic Peninsula of Washington state, Armstrong Marine had difficulty hiring qualified marine aluminum welders to support its growth. Fortunately, the Washington State Department of Commerce offered a grant to the company to set up and operate a marine aluminum welding training program. Impact Washington, part of the MEP National NetworkTM, had previously assisted Armstrong Marine with ISO 9000 certification and some Lean training, and the WA Department of Commerce asked the organization to manage and administer the training program.

We have hired an employee who is currently enrolled with the program at the college, and he’ll be full-time once he completes the course. We have another applicant who completed the class, and we will bring him on board as well. We are pleased to have some traction on the training program this quickly.  —Perry Knudson, Managing Director

Impact Washington enlisted the support of Peninsula College to develop a curriculum and provide training facilities to augment the on-the-job training at Armstrong Machine. The college added marine aluminum welding training to its curriculum and enlisted over 15 students in the first class. An Impact Washington project manager worked closely with Peninsula College, the Department of Commerce, and other parties to organize and execute the project for Armstrong Marine. The training program standardized work processes and helped the company build capacity with new and existing employees. Armstrong Marine saw an uptick in sales and looks forward to growing its skilled workforce through ongoing training.


  • Trained 37 employees
  • Increased sales by $1,500,000, retained sales of $1,200,000
  • Added 2 new jobs and retained 35 jobs
  • Invested $135,000 in growing workforce

Could your company benefit from assistance with workforce training? Connect with your local MEP Center for more information.


MEP National Network Logo
Impact Washington is the official representative of the MEP National Network in Washington. The MEP National Network is a unique public-private partnership that helps small and medium-sized manufacturers generate business results and thrive in today’s technology-driven economy. The MEP National Network comprises the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP), the 51 MEP Centers located in all 50 states and Puerto Rico.

About the author

Impact Washington

Impact Washington’s manufacturing experts bring decades of experience in companies large and small. Drawing on unmatched expertise in every facet of manufacturing, we work to support Washington’s manufacturing community. We’ve worked as floor managers, product engineers, project managers, executives, researchers, materials scientists, and more. Now, our job is to help you.

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