Receiving your training at either a local trade school or through an apprenticeship opens the door to relatively quick training that can quickly lead to a stable career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for welders is expected to remain steady, increasing 8 percent by 2030.
How Long is Welding Trade School?
You can expect to complete welding training in about 7 months to 2 years, depending on the program you choose, and whether or not you enroll full time. A certificate training program can take as little as 7 months for full time students. An associate's degree in welding technology can last two years. Read welding certificate vs associate degree programs for more information about the different types of programs.
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 involve more intense training.
Sometimes, you'll get credits toward your apprenticeship too (possibly up to two out of the normally required 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 school's 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.
- 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.
Find an accredited welding trade school near you.
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 it may be for you to land the job you want.
Tip: Talk to the people who already 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 path.
Like everything else, the sooner you begin, the sooner you will finish!