Welder at work

How to Become a Welder

Welding is the art of joining materials to create high-strength joints for a variety of products, including buildings, manufacturing equipment, and machinery. Welders use high-powered tools to melt, heat, and mold a variety of materials. They also have to be familiar with different materials, including metals, composites, and alloys. A career in welding doesn’t require a college education, but it does require you to constantly build and refine your welding skills and expertise. Find out how to build these skills and make your career in welding.

Start Learning Early

One of the best and earliest ways to get experience in welding and build skills is by starting early in high school. Many high schools offer vocational programs and shop classes that help students build welding and similar relevant skills. Some schools also offer robotics programs, where welding may be a taught. If you know you’re interested in welding while you’re in high school, consider joining these programs.

Do Your Research

Regardless of what point of your education or career you’re in, it’s always important to do your research. Find out about technical and vocational programs near you and research manufacturing companies that offer employment for welders.

Consider Going to Technical School

If you were able to attend a vocational program in high school, you can further your education by enrolling in a technical school or community college with technical programs.

Get Some Basic Experience

The best way to build welding skills is to get on-the-job training. Most welders work in manufacturing industries, so research manufacturing companies near you that offer entry-level employment. Welders also often work in architectural and structural industries.

Consider Doing an Apprenticeship

Some master welders work on their own or on-contract positions that offer apprenticeship. This kind of training can be extremely beneficial if you can find the right opportunities. A master welder can help you hone in on a range of skills, whereas working for a company will limit you to welding skills needed for the company’s purposes.

Research, Build, and Practice Welding Skills

You will have a better career if you have a variety of welding skills and techniques to offer employers. As you get more experience, try and find opportunities to learn and master different skills.

Earn Certifications

The American Welding Society (AWS) offers various welding certifications for individuals looking to make a career out of welding. The AWS also offers resources, such as internship listings, to help you find jobs and do your research. 

Last Updated: April 15, 2015