In this month’s Instructor Q&A, we talk to Mark Welnicki of Machetim Enterprises. by Jason Unger
Each month, we talk to an NTS instructor to find out their background, how they got involved in NTS, and their predictions for the future of the security industry.
This month, we’re speaking to Mark Welnicki of Machetim Enterprises.
What's your background in the security industry?
I started before I graduated, back in my early teens, working as a helper for my brother who owned a business in New York. A bit after school, I found myself working for an automated gate installation company that also did access control and video.
A couple of jobs later, I'm in business for myself focusing on access control and video and integrating other low-voltage disciplines.
How did you get involved in NTS?
A particular project required certification for the technicians. After going through some effort to acquire the certification, I was asked if I would consider becoming an instructor.
Kentucky, at that point, had no one local to teach this class. Basically, I said to myself, "Why not?"
How do you apply your background to the courses you've taught?
Remembering the old technology and the way things used to be accomplished, I think, gives the new generation of students a little perspective on the task at hand.
My strengths are in access control and video and I try to shine a light on an integrated package – that intrusion systems can be a part of a greater system that appears seamless to the owner when installed properly.
What's the funniest experience you've had teaching a course?
That is a hard question to answer. Some of the funniest times are simply listening to the experiences the students have had.
If I had to pick one thing, I'm ashamed to admit, is the fact that a fellow who has been in this industry for better than 30 years failed his exam the first time around. He didn't really pay attention to class and relied solely on experience. Sad to say, that didn't work well with the exam for that class.
What do you find are the best ways for students to get the most out of NTS courses?
Actively participate. I really enjoy a class where the students add their two cents worth. Whether it is questioning something brought out in the course or something that a local AHJ may have required.
I think that shows that they are involved, or engaged, in the class and they will take home more afterward.
How have you seen the security industry change over the years?
Technology has been both a blessing and a curse. It has made the installation easier and reliability of the equipment better.
However, any Tom, Dick, or Harry that can slap the word security on the side of a truck actually hurts our industry, giving our professionals a black eye at times because they don't have the education required to install this equipment properly, no matter how easy it is becoming.
What are your predictions for the future of the industry?
With IP and wireless solutions becoming more reliable and cost effective, the old panels on the wall will be antiquated. We will have a piece of network-attached equipment that will be more at home in a rack than on a wall.
The equipment will continue to get "smarter" as well. One thing will be able to provide so much. I think that as our imaginations continue to push, we will accomplish so much more and provide our customers greater piece of mind.