ForgeFX Simulations is proud to be a training simulator development partner of StrataTech Education Group, a company that focuses on the acquisition, growth and development of specialized career education schools, particularly skilled-trade programs designed to address the nation’s growing infrastructure needs. ForgeFX worked with StrataTech and their subsidiary, the Tulsa Welding School, to develop OcuWeld™, a virtual reality welding training simulator program that teaches students how to prep, grind and join materials in a virtual environment that removes the safety and cost concerns.
OcuWeld Welding Training Simulator
Welcome to the digital transformation of education! The OcuWeld™ welding training simulator utilizes virtual reality to enhance welding training programs using the Meta Quest 2 device and available for distribution to current Tulsa Welding School students on Meta’s App Lab. Designed by welders for welders, and developed by seasoned ForgeFX Simulations developers, OcuWeld provides welding students with the opportunity to practice their hands-on training in a virtual environment where concerns about safety, access and cost are no longer relevant. OcuWeld immerses students in a virtual environment that mimics real life training experiences and provides the opportunity to practice skills independently.
StrataTech has integrated OcuWeld into the curricula of their subsidiaries, Tulsa Welding School and The Refrigeration School, to ensure that students have future-proof skills that employers are seeking. The program launches at a time when demand for skilled trade workers is at an all-time high in part due to the recently passed Infrastructure Bill. The bill, combined with President Biden’s Build Back Framework, will add an average of 1.5 million jobs per year for the next 10 years, according to The White House.
OcuWeld Press Release
First of Its Kind Virtual Reality Training Aims to Help Growing Demand in Skilled Trade Jobs Amid New Infrastructure Bill
The growing pace of digitization is shifting the paradigm of education to lifelong learning that requires a continual evolution of technical skills and training. Alex DeClair and Chris Schuler, directors of the welding programs at The Refrigeration School, Inc. (RSI) and Tulsa Welding School (TWS), say today’s students have different needs, and infusing technology into programs is now imperative in the modern education space. Similarly, Chase Lane, VP of Transformation for StrataTech, understands the need for digital transformation in education and its role in addressing the nation’s critical infrastructure needs.
“It’s time that higher education meets the needs of its students rather than vice versa,” said Lane. “Digital is transforming education and ensuring that these technological advances reach the skilled trades is extremely important to StrataTech and vital to the growing needs of our labor force.”
OcuWeld engages students with a mixture of gamification and education. Students enjoy learning in a fun and highly interactive and dynamic environment that mimics real-world applications.
“As educators, it is our responsibility to ensure that we infuse technology into our programs and curriculum to meet the changing needs of our students and their future employers,” said Mary Kelly, President/CEO of StrataTech. “OcuWeld will not only help our students get additional training, it will also position them to meet the growing demand for skilled professionals.”
Read the full Business Wire press release.
The OcuWeld training simulator includes a library of lessons that cover topics ranging from welding tools and techniques, MIG, TIG, and Stick welds. Leveraging virtual reality hosted simulation-based training, trainees are able to hold virtual torches, grinders, and filler rods just as they would real-world objects during live physical training. Including lessons that cover everything from flat overlapping beads, to overhead beveled plates, to vertical overlapping beads, trainees are able to master lessons by correctly completing each task correctly, in the right order, and without making mistakes.
OcuWeld provides enhanced academic benefits for students through access, autonomy, and amplification. OcuWeld is a fully self-contained application within a Quest 2 device. Students can access OcuWeld any place, any time, with or without internet connection. While OcuWeld is fully integrated with StrataTech’s curriculum, it provides students the autonomy to drill down into process or positions where they feel the need for additional practice, or have a stronger interest. OcuWeld amplifies the student experience by providing supplemental learning outside of the classroom environment, reinforcing the skills and knowledge these students will need to find successful employment in the field.
The simulator includes functional virtual versions of the tools that are required to complete each lesson, giving users not only training on the conceptual aspects but also muscle memory for how to use the tools to complete the job. Just as astronauts and airline pilots practice inside flight simulators until procedures and actions are second nature, welding students are able to practice safely until they are proficient.
“We had the pleasure of working with ForgeFX Simulations on the development of OcuWeld™, our virtual reality welding training simulator. The entire ForgeFX team was fantastic to work with—delivering a high-quality product on time and on budget to help us overcome our business challenges. The software solution they proposed and developed met all of our requirements and exceeded our expectations. Thank you, ForgeFX Simulations!”, Mary Kelly, President/CEO of StrataTech.
OcuWeld in the Media
News On 6 / KOTV
News On 6 / KOTV
OcuWeld enhances the overall student experience by providing supplemental training outside of the traditional classroom environment, reinforcing the skills and knowledge that students will need to find successful and rewarding employment in their chosen field.
Fox 10 Phoenix
OcuWeld engages student trainees with the ideal blend of immersive gamification and education. Students enjoy learning in a fun and highly interactive and dynamic environment that mimics real world applications.
Good Morning Arizona
New High Tech Welding, First-of-its-kind virtual reality welding simulator.
Imagine America Foundation
OcuWeld is a new and innovative virtual reality welding simulator designed by expert welding instructors for welding students. OcuWeld provides welding students the opportunity to practice hands-on classroom training in a virtual environment, making concerns about safety, access, and cost of materials no longer relevant. OcuWeld fully immerses students in a virtual environment that mimics classroom lab training and provides access to lessons that complement their online and onsite curriculum. OcuWeld training is comprised of over 19 different modules to cover all applications for welding, including TIG, MIG, stick, flex-core, and more.
Fox 10 Phoenix
The Refrigeration School (RSI) programs take as little as six months for you to graduate. The RSI is the largest HVAC/R school in the United States! RSI was founded in Phoenix, Arizona in 1965 and offers a variety of programs and classes session to best fit your needs.
OcuWeld Welding Training Simulator Image Gallery
A collection of screenshots from StrataTech’s OcuWeld welding training simulator.
About StrataTech Education Group
StrataTech Education Group focuses on the education, growth and development of specialized career education schools, particularly skilled-trade programs designed to address the nation’s growing infrastructure needs. Holding an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau, StrataTech Education Group’s portfolio includes The Refrigeration School, Inc. (RSI), Tulsa Welding School (TWS), Tulsa Welding School Jacksonville, and Tulsa Welding School & Technology Center (TWSTC).
About The Refrigeration School, Inc.
The Refrigeration School, Inc. (RSI) was founded in Phoenix in 1965 and has been training students for sustainable HVAC careers for more than 60 years. Offering hands-on education with a strong emphasis on the highly sought-after electrical skills, diagnostic and mechanical technology proficiency employers seek, RSI’s programs include Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating Technologies, Electro-Mechanical Technologies (HVAC-R), Mechanical Maintenance Engineering, and an online solar certification training. RSI is an ACCSC accredited school and licensed by the Arizona State Board for Private Post-Secondary Education.
About Tulsa Welding School
Tulsa Welding School (TWS) was founded in 1949 in Tulsa, Okla. and has trained thousands of individuals to become professional, entry-level welders for more than 60 years. Students learn hands-on, technical competencies and skills in labs, workshops and classrooms, with a curriculum designed to meet employers’ needs. TWS offers the Professional Welder and Professional Welder with Pipefitting program. Upon program completion, TWS graduates are equipped to start entry-level careers in a variety of industries, ranging from automotive to manufacturing. TWS is an ACCSC accredited school and licensed by OBPVS.
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