Clark Poston started working for IYRS, a marine trades and technology school based in Rhode Island, over 15 years ago. Today he’s the Director of Student and Industry Relations at IYRS and very proud of the progress the school has made. In 2010, IYRS launched a six-month composites training program under the guidance of composite consultant Bob Lacovara and the Composites Certified Technician (CCT) program. The program joined the school’s two other programs in Marine Systems and Boatbuilding & Restoration. This year, IYRS is teaming up with Lacovara to host the IYRS and ACMA Composites Certification Seminar in Bristol, R.I., from June 27-29. The seminar will provide hands-on composites technician training for individuals interested in CCT certification.
What do composite students learn at IYRS?
We teach students about composite manufacturing using in-class curriculum and hands-on training based on the CCT certification program at ACMA. We teach five different manufacturing processes; including open molding, vacuum infusion, resin transfer molding and wind blade repair. Our shop is an impressive facility with all the equipment needed to perform most manufacturing processes. At the end of the program, the students walk away with a CCT certification and six months of experience.
What makes your program unique?
We offer a constructivist education that enables students to execute composite designs with the skills and knowledge needed to build a successful part. After graduation, they can take the design information provided by an employer and manufacture a product. Compared to classroom-based models, the student achieves significantly more hands-on time with materials and tools. In terms of technical training, it just doesn’t get more successful than this.
What is the best part about your job?
The best part of my job is helping people grow, learn and move their careers forward. It’s reward for any teacher, and even though I’m doing less teaching, all of us at IYRS are happy to be a part of that journey.
What is the demographic of your students?
We have a diverse group of students at IYRS, many with no previous experience looking for a career change. Our students are males and females typically between the ages of 25-35 years old, but we get a number of students as young as 18 and over 60. Most of them are from the U.S. but we’ve also had a good number of international students that have enrolled every year since the school opened.