479 NEWS

2017 Education Report: A Year of Expansion

From the Desk of Kevin Amick

WOW… What a Year!

The Education Department began 2017 with a mission to exceed its performance from the previous year, which had been its biggest yet. With the enthusiasm of our members, the mentorship of our experienced members, and the guidance of our outside professionals and equipment providers we have not only met those 2017 goals, we have surpassed them.

More than 2,400 people attended at least one of our 220 training classes this year.



Our focus is to reach both new and experienced members, and we provide a wide variety of classes ranging from introduction to the film industry to advanced lighting. This year we hosted two very successful panels for the Sound craft: The Business of Sound and the Master Boom Panel. These panels addressed a range of topics, basic to advanced.

Our vendor-provided courses were a tremendous success in 2017. Bringing a product vendor and end-users together is especially effective because the vendors can provide deep insight into their products and users can provide detailed feedback, often directly to the people who develop the products.

I feel the greatest success this year was the participation of our Local leads and Department Heads. Your participation validates the importance of the continuing education and training and ensuring that what is being taught is relevant to the Industry. Your participation provides the student with time-tested methods and procedures and it keeps our craft-training curriculum relevant to the skills and demands of today’s sets.


Expansion of the Education Center

One of the biggest obstacles we faced this year was the construction of the new Education Center. We had to get very creative in where to hold classes and how to keep most everything here on campus, I must say that without the hard work and dedication of the Education Staff we couldn’t have pulled it off. Ed and Felicia work very hard to make sure that you knew where to go and that everything was ready when you got there.

New Workshop #1


With that said, on November 8th we moved into our new 6,400 square foot Education Center. This expansion allows us to have both a construction training mill as well as a workshop for hands-on training of other crafts like Grip, Electric, Costuming and many more. Two additional classrooms, Classrooms A and B, were built to provide spaces for presentations as well as collaborative learning. Our trainers and attendees are enthusiastic about the new dedicated Education Center.

We look forward to seeing more of you in attendance at the Education Center in 2018, whether it be during the week or on the weekends.


IATSE Entertainment & Exhibition Training Trust Fund – Safety Courses

The IATSE Entertainment & Exhibition Training Trust Fund (“IA Training Trust Fund”) was created to promote industry-wide recognized standards for safety, skills and craftsmanship in the entertainment and exhibition industries by:

  • Providing training that improves existing skills, develops new skills, embraces technological change, and focuses on the safest way to perform the work of the crafts;
  • Supporting training opportunities to all employees working under the jurisdiction of the IATSE;
  • Developing state-of-the-art training tools, resources and methods.

The IA Training Trust Fund supports IA Locals in various methods of Craft and Safety Training. This year we launched an aggressive campaign for the A and A2 online safety training courses administered by Contract Services Administration Trust Fund (CSATT), based out of Burbank. Our goal is to get all members trained in these important safety courses.

I am pleased to report that in 2017 Local 479 was the leader in application submissions among locals around the nation operating under the Area Standards Agreement. As a reminder, if you have already submitted an application but have not yet completed both modules, please follow through with the registration of your PIN and the completion of the courses.

Other supported safety training classes that we offered in 2017:

  • OSHA 10 General Entertainment Safety
  • Electrical Safety for the Entertainment Industry
  • Rigging Safety for the Entertainment Industry
  • Firearm Safety for the Entertainment Industry
  • Construction Safety
  • Aerial Work Platform (AWP) and Forklift Trainings
  • Heartsaver© CPR/AED


Heartsaver© CPR/AED

In 2014, we launched our CPR/AED training. We have trained many of our brothers and sisters along with several family members. Our goal was to provide the most up-to-date training available. Over the last twelve months we have had two reported saves in sudden cardiac arrest situations. In June, member Stan Fyfe saved the life of his friend and fellow member Roger Sherer thanks to the training he received in the Heartsaver© CPR/AED training course the previous year. Stan is now one of our trainers for this course.

Roger Sherer with his friend and life-saver, Stan Fyfe.

Click here to read their story “Faced with Life or Death on Set: When Seconds Count”, posted this past July.

We are now in the process of becoming a recognized training facility for CPR through the CPR Training School in Alpharetta.

Regardless of your experience level in the industry, I strongly urge you to take this course.



This is the third year that IA members receive an amazing discount for Lynda.com, a world famous online training series. Members can participate in the 2017-2018 enrollment at any time, but you’ll get the best deal if you sign up today. To enroll, simply call Sarah Williams (404) 361-5676 Ext 110 and make a $25 payment. We will send your request to the IA in New York for enrollment. Please be advised that this process can take up to 4 weeks.


Training Calendar

Our Training Calendar has been live on the Local 479 website for most of the year. The updates are in real time and it’s absolutely the best way to see our class schedule. Members who wish to enroll in any of the training classes we offer should just send an email to [email protected] – please be sure to include the name and date of the specific class you wish to attend in your email.

The Education Calendar is live!

As with all Local 479 training, you must be in good standing to attend a class.


Looking Forward!

Sisters and Brothers, thank you for another amazing year. We look forward to seeing many of you over the course of the next 12 months. With your continued participation whether it be as an Instructor or Student, we can make 2018 the Best Year Yet!


Thank you,

Kevin Amick

Director of Education IATSE Local 479