Ready for a Change? Consider These Exciting Welding Career Paths
Given the number of industries that rely on welding, there is an array of rewarding career options available to you in this field.Attending a vocational school is often the first step to a career in welding, followed by further education and training for more advanced positions, notes this infographic Tulsa Welding School developed.If you’re already a welder but looking for a change of scenery with more opportunities and higher pay, consider one of the following rewarding welding jobs.
· Underwater Welder
If you like travel and adventure, this is the welding career for you.This job requires scuba diving and welding certification with skills ranked at the AWS D3.6 standard. As reported by the CDA Technical Institute, the average salary for a welder is $54,750, while the top 10% make $93,910 or more.
· Shipbuilding and Maintenance Welder
Shipbuilding and maintenance require training in shipfitting and metal fabrication.This is another career that offers opportunities to see the world.The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a median annual salary of $37,500 for shipbuilding welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers.The same source reported that shipyard boilermakers took in $47,000 a year, while shipyard-welding engineers earned $84,000.If you enjoy regularly traveling on ships, you can pursue an on-board ship maintenance career, which requires similar welding skills.
· Military Support Welder
Another exciting career, military support welding involves maintaining military equipment and infrastructure.Due to the risk involved, many military support welders make over $100,000 a year, according to the American Welding Society.Contracting companies typically hire these welders to work on building infrastructure and the repair of military equipment.
An important job in the construction and energy industries, pipefitting consists of installing and fixing pipes that transport liquids or gases. Individuals learn the trade through technical school, apprenticeship, or both.Some states also require official licensure.The Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the average salary for pipefitters is $50,660 per year.
· Motor Sports Welder
If you’re a fan of NASCAR, you’ll enjoy a career as a motor sports welder on a pit crew.These cars are built from the ground up, so a lot of welding and fabrication is required.A professional welding program can give you the training in the welding methods specific to car building, including TIG (tungsten inert gas) welding.PayScale states that the median salary for a TIG welder is about $34,000.
· Sheet-Metal Workers
As you’ll see in the infographic below, the manufacturing industry employs the majority of the welders in the U.S., and this includes sheet-metal workers.Studying sheet metal design and fabrication can help get you into this field, which offers a median salary of $67,500 as reported by the BLS.The BLS also states that the median salary for general welders in manufacturing is $44,000.
Other Welding Career Options
Of course, there are a variety of other career options in addition to those mentioned above. For example, the growth of automated welding will create more career opportunities in fields like robotics, materials engineering, and computer programming. Whichever field you choose, the good news is that the more types of welding you can master, the more you can earn and advance in the field. Check out the infographic below to learn more about the various welding career paths available to you.