SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - The residents of San Juan just celebrated the grand opening of its first Sheet Metal Workers International Association (SMWIA) and the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors' National Association (SMACNA) training center.

The training center offers every participant a quality education, pension plan, health plan, and an overall better standard of living.

The SMWIA Local 41 training center will house equipment and facilities that will aid in teaching apprentices the art and trade of service; testing, adjusting, balancing (TAB); and sheet metal work. Included in the facility will be the newest, cutting-edge TAB lab that aims to be certified by the Testing, Adjusting and Balancing Bureau (TABB).

"We are really excited about being a part of Local 41's success," said Erik Emblem, TABB administrator and the National Energy Management Institute's (NEMI) executive director.

"When testing and balancing in a humid climate such as San Juan's, you want to be sure your technician and contractor are certified professionals. We look forward to getting our colleagues in San Juan certified."

The training center was made possible through a grant from NEMI.

"It's important to have a vision," said Emblem. "We look forward to seeing Local 41 grow."

Publication date: 07/10/2006