College Resources

Career Tracks: Welding

A welder is a technician skilled in the art of joining metal. Students in this curriculum learn to manufacture products, build structures and repair broken or cracked structures using gas-fueled torches and electric-arc processes.

Classroom instruction merges with hands-on lab experience to prepare the graduate for employment in a variety of industrial and construction settings.

Duties

Graduates in this field may be required to:

  • work from blueprints

  • join metal pieces together or cut/trim metal pieces to desired shapes and sizes by applying intense heat

  • electric-arc welders select suitable electrodes, adjust electric current controls, start the arc by touching the metals to the electrode, withdraw the electrode and move it along the areas to be joined

  • gas welders select welding rod and torch tip, adjust the valves that control the flow of gas into the torch and size of the flame, and move the flame along the area to be joined
     

Working Conditions

Graduates in this field commonly experience:

  • working with hot parts, safety of operation, and various welding methods such as Oxy - Fuel, shielded metal arc, gas metal arc, and gas tungsten arc welding

  • may be inside or outside (welding shops, production areas, on location at work site)

  • work in cooperation with others

  • may work independently

  • work under direct supervision

  • may require travel, and or additional hours
     

Physical Demands

  • active (walking, carrying, standing)

  • lifting to 70+ lbs.

  • good eyesight
     

Characteristics & Temperament

Graduates in this field should have:

  • ability to work with numbers, symbols

  • ability to work with inanimate objects - setting up, operating, maintaining

  • fair oral communication skills

  • ability to learn and "catch on" quickly

  • spatial aptitude: understand two-dimensional objects, recognize relationships resulting from the movement of things

  • mechanical reasoning: understand mechanical principles and devices, understand how things work an how to fix them

  • good motor coordination: hand/eye coordination, accurate movements, finger/manual dexterity

  • ability to follow oral and written directions

  • self-discipline/self-motivation

  • good judgment
     

Employment Outlook

Graduates in this field can expect the following developments:

  • 71% placement rate for 2010-2012 graduates

  • possible self-employment

  • possible advancement to supervisor or inspector

  • recertification must be obtained at each job site for each employer
     

Employers

Recent graduates have found work at: