Are you interested in pursuing a career in welding? If so, then you have some exciting days ahead of you. Welding is a great career choice for those individuals who enjoy working with their hands and get a sense of accomplishment out of building and repairing things.
The United States isn’t just one of the biggest producers of manufactured goods, but it also has the largest transportation network and among the most populated cities. All of this is to say that if you want to weld, then there are many things waiting to be welded. But before you jump into a welding career, the first thing to do is head on over to welding school where you can get the proper training and certification.
The Basics of Formal Welding Programs & What They Teach Students
A formal welding school provides a robust education that includes both technical skills as well as more ‘soft’ skills designed to help students succeed in the workplace. Think of it as a good mix of theory, technical expertise, and practice — lots, and lots of practice. The following are a look at some general program lessons you can expect to experience when enrolled in a formal welding program:
- Welding plates and piping across multiple positions and conditions. In the real world, you rarely get to choose the position of what you need to weld — meaning don’t be surprised if you find yourself welding in some pretty awkward, uncomfortable, and tight spaces. A welding program will teach you how to best approach different welding positions and the techniques you want to use in each in order to get the welds done safely and efficiently.
- Lessons in all of the major welding process. One of the big advantages of going through a formal education process over trying to learn on the job is that you won’t just learn how to weld in one process or for one job. Rather, great welding schools will teach students across all four of the major welding processes — GMAW, GTAW, SMAW, and Flux Core Arc Welding. Different industries will use different processes and thus by learning all of the processes, students become more informed and versatile once they enter the job market.
- Key industry-related soft skills. Succeeding in the workplace takes more than just the ability to form good welds. In most welding careers, you are going to be working with others but also be expected to work independently. During a formal welding program, students will also encounter lessons that help them to develop skills in communicating clearly about technical tasks, how to write and read technical pieces describing what a job entails, and how best to work in a group welding project.
- Advanced math. To expand on that technical writing, it is important for students to come ready to develop and advance their math skills. Welders must have a solid understanding of fractions, decimals, geometry, and trigonometry as welding frequently requires the measurement of angles and cutting pipes and welding at the right degree seams to create solid joints. Over the course of a formal welding program, students will also learn the properties of different types of metals and how to best approach each when welding.
What to Know Before You Enroll in a Formal Welding Program
The most important trait a person can have or develop before enrolling in a formal welding program is a dedication to practice. Most programs will have open shop hours and large periods of class in which you will have time to practice different welds and processes. Some students will come in and use this time to socialize or do anything other than practice.
But if you use every extra minute you have to practice those welding fundamentals and build on those welding fundamentals, then you will both develop a solid welding skillset and earn much-desired recognition from your professors who will go on and make those first career recommendations.
Remember, Michael Jordan didn’t make the varsity basketball team when he first tried out, but after failing he became renown — from then and onto the end of his career — for being the first person in the gym practicing and the last one to leave. Having that same type of dedication during your time at welding school will likewise put you far above the rest.
Are You Ready to Begin a Career in Welding? Contact Advanced Technology Institute Today
If you love working with your hands and want a career with which you can go anywhere — and we do mean anywhere — then you should consider pursuing a degree in welding. At Advanced Technology Institute, we’re proud to offer a unique Associate of Occupational Science in Maritime Welding Technology with Service Management degree that offers a robust curriculum in order to best prepare students for the workforce. Learn more by contacting a representative today.