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UA Veterans in Piping (VIP) By UA Veterans in Piping (VIP) • August 30, 2019

From one brotherhood to another

The United Association Veterans in Piping Program can be intense but can also create a great camaraderie between participants and their instructors.

For two UA VIP Fort Carson welding graduates and their lead instructor, motorcycles helped them to develop a friendship.

James Galvez, Welding Class 14 graduate, and David Story Welding Class 15 graduate, joined Fort Carson Lead Welding Instructor Jason Smith as they all rode their motorcycles to the 27th Annual Veterans Motorcycle Rally in Cripple Creek, Colo.

jason smith- moto ride

Initially, Smith and Galvez had planned to ride out to the rally, but when Story rode his bike to the graduation ceremony, Smith asked him if he would like to join them on their ride to the Veterans Motorcycle Rally.

Since Galvez and Smith belong to the same Local, they decided to meet at their Local Union Hall on the morning of the rally to catch up and discuss work before heading to Pueblo, Colo. to meet with Story and then ride together the rest of the way.

The three union Brothers then made the short ride to the three-day rally, which includes live music, food vendors and a wall signed by all veterans who attend.

For Smith, UA VIP is a way to help him give back to the men and women who protect our freedoms.

"It has been an honor for me to give back to these fine men who have sacrificed living their lives in order to protect our country,” said Smith. “They have left the brotherhood of the military to join another one, the United Association.”

The UA VIP Program is a free18-week accelerated career training program for active-duty transitioning military service members. Those who successfully complete the course are guaranteed a job in the piping industry and also enter into a five-year UA registered apprenticeship program.

A guaranteed job helps alleviate the stress of starting a career, especially as the job provides livable wages and excellent benefits including healthcare, a pension and 401K. Advancing through their apprenticeship, UA VIP graduates earn increased wages as they grow their skillset and work toward becoming a UA journeyman.

For more information about the UA VIP program at Fort Carson, including program benefits, click here.

jason smith- moto ride2