The Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF), a hub for tile training.

Concerned about the lack of quality training and education in the tile trade, many tile associations have joined the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) and other industry supporters to overcome this challenge. Implementing ways to expand more nationwide training, associations such as Assopiastrelle (now known as Confindustria Ceramica) have committed to helping the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation (CTEF) thru financial and educational support.

“Over the past 10 years, the number of tile installers have not kept pace with large increases in the amount of tile manufactured abroad and sold in the U.S.,” says Eric Astrachan, executive director of TCNA. “The continued growth of CTEF, however, will have a positive impact on quality installation education and the future growth of the tile market.”

In addition to financial donations, TCNA and the National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA) will provide two instructors to CTEF, Stephanie Samulski and Gerald Sloan. They will teach courses and workshops that deliver hands-on techniques and the latest information on standards.

“CTEF’s objective is to expand our curriculum and course availability on an even greater national scope with this infusion of resources and financial support,” says Dave Gobis, executive director of CTEF. “We have grown due to the generous support of manufacturers and the Tile Council, but this new surge of industry support will take us to the next level.”