When you're young and just starting out on your own, you may be asking yourself, “How fast can I start earning a good salary?”
The welding field offers you a chance to get into a career quickly with the right training. You can even start an apprenticeship program to earn faster. Certified union welders can make approximately $30 an hour, making this a great investment in your future.
How Long Is Welding Trade School?
You can expect to complete welding training in 3-4 semesters, an average of about 1-2 years. Though some trade schools have programs that take as little as 7 months for full time students. Many community colleges offer a variety of welding classes. They understand the value of providing you with choices when it comes to scheduling your classes.
If you're going to attend welding school on a part-time basis, then the timing of your graduation will depend on your schedule and availability. If you do have prior welding experience, then you may be able to finish your program earlier than expected. With prior experience, it is possible to appeal to the school, asking for an exception through a course waiver. There are also accelerated programs that can be faster and they usually involve intensive training.
Sometimes, you'll get credits toward your apprenticeship too (possibly up to two out of the five years) if you choose the appropriate accredited welding training course. It can be difficult to land a spot in an apprenticeship, so you will want to find a way to stand out.
Example Trade School Welding Program Lengths
The following information was found on the official website or most recent catalog for each listed school.
Tulsa Welding School professional welding program takes 7 months for a full time student.
Fortis undergraduate certificate in welding technology takes 48 weeks to complete.
Beal College welding technology program takes 12 months for a full time student to complete.
Centura College combination welding diploma program takes 12 months to complete.
Delta Technical College journeyman welder program takes 30 weeks (7 months) to finish.
Lincoln Tech welding technology program takes about 43 weeks (about 10 months) to complete on a daytime schedule.
Midwest Technical Institute journeyman welder program takes 7 months to complete.
Platt College combination welding diploma program takes 40 weeks to complete as a full time student.
South Texas Vo-Tech combination welding program takes 40 weeks to complete.
Southern Technical College associate of science in welding technology program is 72 weeks in length.
The Refrigeration School welding specialist program takes about 7 months for a full time student to finish.
UEI College welding program takes about 9.5 months to finish.
Other Welding Certifications
Consider getting different types of certifications in the various types of welds like MIG, TIG and Stick. Doing so lets you specialize in certain areas and will make you more attractive to employers. The more versatile you are, the more likely you'll be able to land a great job, regardless of the hiring climate.
Tip: Talk to the people who hold a welding job you are interested in. Ask them about their education and find out what they attribute their success to. They'll be able to tell you about the time commitment needed to find success in your own career.
Like everything else, the sooner you begin, the sooner you will finish! Find local welding schools near you.