The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT) hosted its own trainers from across its network of schools, including Arizona, Chicago, Hawaii, Maryland, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Northern and Southern California, Philadelphia and Texas, to learn more about concrete surface preparation. Jon-Don, a leading brand in carpet cleaning, restoration, janitorial chemicals, and concrete surface prep and polishing, taught the IUPAT instructors in attendance. Training was conducted at the IUPAT International Finishing Trades Institute in Hanover, Maryland, August 15–19.

During the week, instructors perfected the use of grinders to strip away epoxy floor finishes from concrete, using bead blasters to prep the concrete surface, performed concrete repair work, staining, honing and polishing.

“IUPAT has conducted ‘Training the Trainers’ week-long events with other flooring manufacturers,” said Alex Beltran, director of training, IUPAT. “We believe that the best information and instruction comes from the manufacturers themselves. Often our trainers are already familiar with the type of floor covering installation being taught, but our manufacturer partners can provide current guidelines and additional hands-on skills to deepen the quality of instruction we can pass along to our apprentices and journeymen.”

IUPAT runs over 100 training facilities for approximately 160,000 active and retired men and women in the U.S. and Canada. This makes it one of the largest flooring installation schools in the industry. “It’s not uncommon for a certified graduate of our flooring program to make over $100,000 in their first year,” remarked Beltran.

Robert Varden, CEO, International Floor Covering Training Alliance (IFCTA) and consultant to IUPAT, was there to assist. “This IUPAT facility in Hanover is state-of-the-art, with over 30 to 40,000 sq. ft. of classroom and instruction space. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”

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