• Building a well-educated work force: NESPAs new hands-on concrete pool display, built by Anthony & Sylvan Pools, will familiarize students with components such as rebar, drains, plumbing, tiles, surfaces, coping and more

    Credit: NESPA

    Building a well-educated work force: NESPA’s new hands-on concrete pool display, built by Anthony & Sylvan Pools, will familiarize students with components such as rebar, drains, plumbing, tiles, surfaces, coping and more

The Northeast Spa & Pool Association now has a custom teaching tool — a concrete pool simulation display — at the Professional Training Institute in its Hamilton, N.J., base.

The cutaway shows students rebar, drains, plumbing, tiles, skimmer, coping and lighting, as well as different surfaces. It will be used in classes starting in the fall, to demonstrate the correct way to build a concrete pool.

“NESPA has found that creating a real world, hands-on experience in our education not only enhances the class experience, but opens the door to a more detailed discussion between instructors and students,” said Paulette Pitrak, deputy executive director of NESPA.

The progressive wall, as Pitrak calls it, was the brainchild of the NESPA Education Committee. Their mission was to devise ways to best use the warehouse area behind the corporate offices. “The committee members were all teachers at some time; their input was important because they’re the real ones doing [pool construction],” she noted.

The pool display was constructed for free by NESPA member Anthony & Sylvan Pools of Doylestown, Pa. The company’s engineer designed the display, and two senior staffers oversaw the 16-member crew who built it. “Having a better-educated, more experienced work force benefits everyone, and we were glad to donate our time and experience to make it happen,” said Alan Walker, A&S vice president of operations, and vice president of NESPA’s Penn Jersey Chapter.

This display is the latest in NESPA’s hands-on training aids, which include a vinyl-liner pool, a spa and safety covers.

Pitrak estimates up to 250 people study at the facility yearly. Sessions range from NESPA’s five or six classes in fall and winter to manufacturer training, CPO courses, electrician classes and more.

NESPA’s fall training schedule will be released in August. For details, visit www.nespapool.org/education.