Take a look at some of the newsworthy items for the VIP program.

Fort Carson Welding Class 27 students find out placements for UA apprenticeship

The UA VIP students in Fort Carson Welding Class 27 are halfway through their accelerated welding training. 

By joining the UA VIP program, these transitioning active-duty service members have guaranteed themselves a successful civilian career in the pipe trades that will begin immediately after they leave the military. 

The UA VIP program is a DOD SkillBridge program created to help active duty service members transition into civilian careers by providing on-base training during their last six months of military commitment. 

At this point in their training, Welding Class 27 students have begun selecting the UA Local Union they will join and start their DOL-registered apprenticeship program. 

Students are placed at an agreed-upon location with a United Association Local Union anywhere in the country. 

Army Spc. Gabriel Fonseca learned he will complete his five-year apprenticeship program with Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 421 in North Carolina, while fellow classmate Army Sgt. Joshua Shapiro will stay in Colorado to complete his apprenticeship with Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 58.

Other Class 27 students will also begin their apprenticeship with Local 58 and Plumbers and Steamfitters Local 44 in Spokane, Wash. 

Students now have about nine more weeks of on-base training. They can earn industry-recognized certifications such as Oxy-Fuel Cutting, SMAW Plate Welding, SMAW Pipe Welding, SMAW Pipe Spool and GRAW Pipe Welding. 

Through classroom instruction and hands-on training, students will learn how to install, maintain and repair all types of piping systems and join structural steel brackets and supports for these systems. 

UA VIP offers nine programs at the following seven select military installations: 

A career with the UA


The UA offers a wide range of career opportunities for qualified applicants interested in the piping industry. 

UA VIP students learn skills in welding, HVAC-R or fire suppression. These trades offer stable employment, competitive wages and career advancement opportunities. 

After VIP graduates complete their apprenticeship program, they become journeymen, opening up even more career opportunities. 

The UA VIP program provides transitioning military members with the basic skills and tools necessary to have a successful civilian career. 

All transitioning military members in their last six months of service are encouraged to apply for the UA VIP program to gain the tools necessary for a fulfilling career.