Friday, October 9, 2015

Welding – Beyond the Sparks and the Arc

Read workforce analyst Lynn Wallis' full article 

What do skyscrapers, automobiles, rockets, and ships have in common? In all likelihood, they have been welded. According to the American Welding Society, an estimated 50 percent of the United States gross national product is affected by welding. Skyscrapers, bridges, and highways would be impossible to build without welding, as would oil and natural-gas pipelines, giant wind turbines, and solar panels.

Welding is one of the few career choices that seems to be in high demand at all times. This is because welders are needed in almost every industry. Oregon hourly wages in 2015 vary from $13.43 for entry level positions to $25.94 for experienced welders at the high end of the pay scale. According to, the salaries of welders may vary a lot depending on how skilled the worker is and if he/she is willing to travel and/or work in hazardous conditions.

Training for this occupation varies broadly from a few weeks of schooling or on-the-job training to several years of combined schooling and on-the-job training. Most welders, according to the Oregon Career Information System, learn their job skills through a formal training program either in high school, professional-technical schools or two-year colleges. Some branches of the military also train people to be welders and metal workers.

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