The best trade schools for welding have been listed and discussed in this article, including tips needed for a career in the welding field.
Welders are people who are experts in fusing metals and thermoplastics. Their job is to apply a lot of heat to metal parts, melt them and combine them into certain shapes. In the United States, more than 50,000 people work as welders.
We cannot trivialise how important it is today in our society to have people who can join metals together irrespective of size and shape. Welding is a very efficient way of joining two strong materials. There is a huge demand for workers who are ready to endure the challenges and hardships of this important profession.
What is welding?
Welding is like a semi-manufacturing or a process of fabrication in which two or more parts are fused together using heat, pressure, or both, forming a joint as the parts cool. Welding is commonly used for metals and thermoplastics, but it can also be used for wood. The welded joint produced can be called a weldment.
Some materials will require the welder to make use of special processes and methods. The parts to be assembled are called parent materials. Any material used to help form a join with the parent materials is called filler or consumable. Depending on the form, these materials can be called consumable electrodes (for arc welding), parent plates or pipes, filler wires, etc.
Generally, the filler is chosen close to the composition of the parent metal to form a uniform weld, but there are cases, for example when welding brittle cast iron, when the filler used has a completely different composition and properties. Such welds are called heterogeneous welds.
The welded joint produced can be called a weldment.
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What do Welders do?
The exact job description of a welder largely depends on the type of work he is hired to do. Below are some of the most traditional jobs and work of a welder:
- Welding different metal parts together using torches and electric arcs.
- Use of different welding equipment according to each work situation
- Analyze equipment and take the necessary measures when faults are found
- Observe various welding processes and ensure that the heat does not change the size and shape of the material.
- Ensure that all Welding work complies with safety standards and industry regulations.
- Assembling and disassembling welding parts before and after work
What Should New Welders Expect in the Field?
New people in this field must learn how to use welding equipment safely, which can take weeks. They must be individuals who are willing to be professionals, that are reliable, fearless and who have the zeal to work long hours. Employers prefer to hire highly educated people for higher-paying jobs.
When new welders enter the workforce for the first time, they may be surprised by the amount of overtime required. Mandatory night or weekend work can be exhausting and may make some individuals start thinking about whether to leave the job. Once a job needs to be done, the welder stays on until the job is done.
Welding is physically demanding work. Prospectives should expect long periods of bending, squatting and standing. They spend a long time focusing their gaze on a fixed place. Getting used to moving around in protective gear is a challenge in itself. When working with metals of all types and uses, colleagues encounter grease, paint and dirt.
Welding Schools Near Me
As you be seeing from our list of trade schools for welding, the institutions are located all over the country, with many located in different states. If you don’t live in one of the above areas but are still interested in welding school, fear not. There may be an accredited welding school nearby. In fact, many colleges and universities, community colleges and trade schools offer welding courses and [programs.
Finding a welding school near you is as easy as typing “welding schools near me” into Google. You may find a wide variety of programs to choose from. Just because they didn’t make our list of best welding trade schools doesn’t mean they aren’t top programs.
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List of Trade Schools for Welding
We have listed os the best schools you need to consider if you are interested in making a career out of welding. These schools are fully accredited by official welding certification bodies and offer programs that are recognised around the world.
1. Welder Training & Testing Institute
The Welder Training & Testing Institute is accredited by the ACCSC and the American Welding Society – this is one of the best places to get your welding certification and gain recognition from potential employers. They offer different programs and certificates depending on what you want to study and what career you want to pursue.
Their Welder Fitter course is their core professional-level course and takes 900 hours to complete. Ideal for beginners with little or no welding experience to get the training needed to work in the welding industry.
The combined welding program is slightly shorter at 740 hours and does not include blueprint reading, pipe fitting, etc. if you are looking to advance your skills, you can also find other advanced welding courses in this trade school.
2. Reed State Technical College
In just two full-time semesters and 28 credit hours, you can earn a certificate that you can complete in a short time in welding technology from Reid State Technical College. You are also open to other options if you’re looking for a more comprehensive program. You can earn a full welding technology certificate in pipe welding through four semesters of full-time study and 58 credits.
However, if you need more than just a certificate, they also offer an Associate of Occupational Technology (AOT). It takes six full semesters and 77 credits, after which you will acquire a major technical major in welding technology and a minor in industrial electrical/electronic engineering and this will equip you for a lifelong career in building and manufacturing.
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3. Tulsa Welding School
Tulsa Welding School has three different campuses in the United States and is the largest trade school in the country. They offer a seven-month Professional Welder program in Tulsa and Jacksonville that includes 80% hands-on welding experience. You are only in class one day a week. The rest of the time you weld yourself in a controlled environment and learn from experienced professionals.
A flexible schedule for classes can help you fit your education into your busy life. The program will cover all major types of welding including structural welding, MIG and Flux core welding, pipe welding, TIG welding and more.
At the Texas campus, you can complete the Welding Specialist program. When you complete one of their welding programs, you can earn a certificate recognized by the American Welding Society (AWS) that shows future employers that you know your skills and took the time to earn the most prestigious certification.
4. Hobart Institute of Welding Technology
You cannot talk about the most recognised trade schools for welding without mentioning Hobart. They have a reputation for making high-quality welding equipment, but that’s not all they do in this field. Hobart Institute of welding has been teaching welding for over eight decades. In this school, nothing else is thought except welding and this has made them popular in the world.
With an industry-leading curriculum, you can graduate in less than a year with a certificate recognized by the American Welding Society. In addition, the school offer opportunity for further learning for graduates through employment assistance.
5. Mesa Community College
Whether you are the kind of person that just want to earn a certification and begin your welding job or spend more time earning a degree, Mesa Community College will provide you with a welding program, that will suit you.
You can earn a Certificate of Completion (CCL) in Welding Technology for 15 credits. Additionally, if you want to earn a CCL in Manufacturing Welding then you can come with 26 credits. But if you want a degree, you can earn 64-73 credits for an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in welding.
All certifications will equip you properly for hands-on training for a welding career, but if you earn an AAS certification, you’ll be ready to take the exam and earn certifications be qualifications in welder performance through AWS, API, ASME, or an AWS Certified Welder Inspector.
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6. Advanced Welding Institute
Advanced Welding Institute is one of the trade schools for welding that offer accelerated hands-on courses to provide you with the best possible training to prepare you for your new career in the welding industry. You will receive individualized attention to ensure each student has the tools they need to perform at their highest level. Every day you spend at least eight hours in the Welding Shop, a state-of-the-art training centre designed for effective teaching.
The class size is small and the ratio of students to teachers is also small- this will ensure that you get plenty of individualized instruction to help you develop quickly. Offering 15- and 24-week full-time welding programs and AWS, ASME, and API certifications, this school will train you to be one of the top welders in the field.
7. Wichita Area Technical College
If you want to go out into the world and start welding for a living, Wichita Area Technical College can help you earn an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree or a Technical Certificate (TC) in welding there. You can choose from three different welding programs, depending on how much time you want to spend on training.
The fastest way is the Welding Fast Track program, where you earn your Welding TC in just 19 credit hours. You can earn a TC for a complete welding course in 46 credits, compared to the 62 credits required to earn an AAS. This trade school is accredited by the Higher Education Commission, and its welding program is also accredited by the American Welding Society, helping you find jobs in the welding industry.
8. Lincoln Welding School
The Lincoln Electric Welding School offers eight standard and advanced welding courses. This is a vocational school specializing in welding, preparing you for a successful career in the field. When it comes to welding equipment, LEWS is one of the biggest names in the industry, so it’s no surprise that they’re also one of the best trade welding schools.
Here you will only be taught by well-trained and highly qualified welders and you will receive plenty of guided practical training while you are here. Upon completion of the program, you will receive a certificate of completion, a testament to Lincoln’s reputation. This could be a great stepping stone to one of the best jobs in the welding industry.
9. Davis College of Applied Technology
Welders who graduate from Davis Applied Technology College will start a good chance of employment as the school has a 72% placement. Their certification is recognized by the American Welding Society, so you’ll be happy to know that future employers will treat your certification with the respect earned by AWS-certified graduates.
Here you can learn all types of welding such as flux core arc welding (FCAW), shield metal arc welding (GMAW), gas metal arc welding (GTAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), and more. Since it is a technical college, the vocational welding certificate obtained is very valuable.
10. Modern welding school
ACCSC, ASME and AWS have fully accredited Modern Welding School, your certification will surely open many doors for you. With full-time courses during the day and part-time evening courses available, you can get training for all different types of welding in a schedule that fits your time.
If you are interested in full-time training, then you have to spend 900 hours in 30 weeks and the part-time evening programs will take 665 hours in 45 weeks. Upon graduation, you will master welding methods such as structural welding, pipe welding, acetylene welding, MIG, TIG and many others.
They also offer a series of workshops to help you expand your post-certification education and help you stay up to date on the latest and greatest improvements in the industry.
How much does welding school cost?
If you want to become a reputable welder, education and training from any of the trade schools for welding discussed above is the most important factor in determining which welding career you want to pursue. However, learning the latest welding techniques comes at a price.
How much does a trade school for welding cost?
A lot of welding schools out there that will provide you with good training will cost around $3,000 and $20,000, and you will need to pay an average of $7,000 to $9,000 to get your certification. For a welding degree in a reputable school that you can complete in two years, you will pay $19,000, while a four-year degree in welding at the bachelor’s level in an accredited school will cost at least $40,000.
What skills are needed to become a Welder?
- Ability to understand and read blueprints.
- The design of any construction project revolves around the blueprint, so being able to read the blueprints is important for you as a welder.
- Mathematical skills.
- The welding trade deals with precise numbers. As a welder, you use math every day, read blueprints, determine distances and angles, and calculate the strength of each weld.
- Learn about different welding methods.
- Despite the training opportunities, employers are often looking for experienced welders. The best welders are familiar with many different welding methods.
- Ability to perform related tasks in fabrication.
- Welding is only part of a welder’s job. Other tasks that a welder must undertake include grinding, bevelling, torch cutting, brazing and simple soldering.
- Strong interpersonal skills.
- Welders meet a lot of people during the day. In order to work with other people from different trades, project managers, suppliers and customers, you must be able to communicate effectively.
- Eye for details.
- When you’re a welder, it’s important to pay attention to the smallest details. Small defects can be very significant and even destroy the weld completely.
- Good work ethic.
- Like any job, welding requires dedication. Customers and colleagues trust you to do your job well so that projects are completed on time.
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