KLAMATH FALLS – Addressing a major need in the Klamath Basin, Klamath Community College (KCC) has launched a new well drilling program that will provide training for licensure of well drillers and well construction workers.
Partnered closely with KCC’s welding program, students can acquire a welding and pipe welding certificate, and be instructed in well construction – including 90 hours of hands-on training for vertical and horizontal drilling. The program will also include job site safety training, and preparation for testing on laws and codes to acquire well drillers licensure, and the American Welding Society’s pipe welding certification.
“We are happy to work with current professionals in the field to train the next generation of state-qualified well drillers,” said Chris Stickles, KCC dean of Career and Technical Education.
Need for licensed well drilling or well expansion on rural and agriculture properties remains a high-in-demand career path in Southern Oregon and beyond, particularly in times of sustained drought where some wells have gone dry or may require deepening. The KCC well drilling program will increase the availability of workers who are licensed and proficient in this important trade skill.
In 2022, Oregon’s Joint Legislative Emergency Board approved $975,000 in funding for KCC through the Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) to invest in the well drilling program and a well drilling rig.
“This is a great example of many parties working together to fulfill a common interest and address a serious need in our community,” said KCC President Dr. Roberto Gutierrez. “Thank you to HECC, the Oregon Legislature, Rep. Werner Reschke, and others who played an instrumental role in securing the funding to help us train more certified well drillers that are so desperately needed today and into the future.”
KCC is in the process of acquiring a DM450 Well Drilling Rig for training, at an approximate cost of $850,000 through vendor Drillmax. The DM450 well drilling truck is a multi-purpose mobile drilling rig that can conduct water well drilling, geothermal drilling, and cathodic protection drilling.
Students have already been immersed in training on well drilling sites in the region, including welding 16-inch well casings to be placed into the ground for an agricultural well. The program is designed to primarily focus on domestic water wells.
For more information visit http://www.klamathcc.edu.