McLouth High School 2022 Grant

Updated: Sep 9

Hamm Foundation grants $1,037 to McLouth High School for welding curtains to help increase the number of students allowed per class

Hamm Foundation Director Lexi Peterson with Nichole Hinrichsen and her Spring of 2022 welding students.


In 2012, USD #342 converted their wood shop to a metals shop and changed their tech lab room into an ag room. Nichole Hinrichsen was hired to teach welding, agriculture mechanics, and animal science courses at McLouth High School.

For the past nine years Nichole has focused her shop budget on purchasing new welders as well as increasing the number of tools in the shop to meet the demand of student enrollment.

Since 2016, only 50%-71% of students who requested welding were placed in the class due to demand. This year there was an unprecedented amount of shop requests (over 70) but only 18 spots available for welding and 10 spots for agriculture mechanics.

The school's shop was utilizing old bathroom stall panels to divide four welding stations to protect students from flash burn and sparks. This was not an environment that models industry standards. Nichole envisioned stations divided by industry grade welding curtain, while keeping them on frames with wheels to open up stations for large group demonstrations.

Nichole requested and was awarded a grant from the Hamm Foundation for framed welding curtains to allow her to have more flexibility in the shop and possibly be able to increase the number of students per class.

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