Opportunities in Welding
SOURCES: Weldingschool.com, WeldingSchoolGuide.com, & AWS/American Welding Society (See links below.)
Opportunities for welders exist in any industry that creates goods and structures from metal. It takes highly skilled welders to turn ideas and materials into valuable products. To become a skilled welder requires mechanical aptitude or a strong foundation in math, science, and technology.
Jobs for welders are projected to grow by 4% through 2024. Out of the 397,900 welders employed by industry today, the average age is 55. The American Welding Society predicts that by 2025, the country will face a shortage of as many as 400,000 welding operators.
There are numerous welding careers to choose from, with jobs available in:
- Oil and Gas/Pipeline
- Automotive & AutoSports
- Many others, including Art & Design
Wages for Welders
- 90% of Welders: $51,610
- Median Wage: $34.410
- 10% of Welders: $22,680
Though, the top careers in welding can earn double, triple, or more than the average salaries. Highly skilled welders that are willing to travel and/or work in hazardous conditions can earn well over $100,000 a year.
- Traveling Industrial Pipe Welders: $50,000 – $185,000
- Under Water Welders: $100,000 – $200,000
- Military Support Welders: $160,000 – $200,000
The Future in Welding
The welders of the future will increasingly utilize high-tech skills for the operation of robots and other automated systems that incorporate laser and electron beams for metal bonding. “Welding will increasingly offer career opportunities for students interested in materials engineering, robotics, lasers, computer programming and systems integration,” says Patricio Mendez, Director of the Canadian Center for Welding and Joining at the University of Edmonton in Alberta, Canada.