Snead State Welding Student Earns Platinum Level Certification


Two students through programs available with the Snead State Community College Workforce Development program received a rare platinum level certification – an achievement earned by only 209 individuals within the state of Alabama.

Nicholas League of Albertville enrolled in the Welding Technology program, a short-term certificate program, in September and is on track to complete his training in the fall. Christanna Sparks of Arab recently completed the Ready to Work program at the Arab Instructional Site. The Ready to Work program teaches students employment skills, such as job acquisition, basic computer skills, problem solving, decision analysis, diversity, time management and workplace behavior. Through the Ready to Work program, students also receive job placement assistance and information about furthering their education.

As part of both the Welding and Ready to Work programs, students complete ACT WorkKeys testing for the National Career Readiness Certificate, which is given on four levels – bronze, silver, gold and platinum - based on scores. The WorkKeys testing assesses knowledge in three areas, Applied Mathematics, Reading for Information and Locating Information.

League and Sparks received the highest possible levels of certification. Only 209 students out of over 60,000 who received certificates scored at the platinum level.

“Achieving the Platinum level certificate is rare, so we are extremely excited that Nicholas and Christanna attained this level of certification,” said Cherri Barnard with the SSCC Workforce Development Program.

According to Barnard, many businesses and industries use the National Career Readiness Certificate as part of the hiring criteria for new employees. The credential is recognized not only statewide but also nationally.

Sparks is currently employed by Little King Manufacturing in Union Grove. She has also enrolled in the online short-term certificate program in Logistics, Distribution and Purchasing at Snead State. Coming from a family of welders, League plans to be a traveling welder for a few years before “settling down to something more local.”

For more information on the Welding Technology program, the free Ready to Work program or any of the programs available through Snead State’s Workforce Development program, please contact Cherri Barnard at or (256) 840-4152, or visit the website at

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