Community colleges offer various types of welding programs. Some programs cover a variety of welding techniques, while others specialize in an area, such as gas metal arc, gas tungsten arc or shielded metal arc welding.
Schools with Welding Technology Programs
These schools offer accredited welding technology programs and use hands-on training and experience to help students gain skills in welding.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Tuition (2015-2016)*|
|Wichita Area Technical College||Wichita, KS||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$7,317 in-state, $8,728 out-of-state|
|Davis Applied Technology College||Kaysville, UT||2-year, Public||Certificate||$5,093|
|Reid State Technical College||Evergreen, AL||2-year, Public||Certificate, Diploma||$4,380 in-state, $7,830 out-of-state|
|J.F. Drake State Community and Technical College||Huntsville, AL||2-year, Public||Certificate||$4,290 in-state, $7,740 out-of-state|
|College of Lake County||Grayslake, IL||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,612 in-district, $8,358 in-state, $11,046 out-of-state|
|College of DuPage||Glen Ellyn, IL||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$5,275 in-district, $10,885 in-state, $12,985 out-of-state|
|Warren County Career Center||Lebanon, OH||2-year, Public||Certificate||$8,500|
|Mesa Community College||Mesa, AZ||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,046 in-state, $7,830 out-of-state|
|Des Moines Area Community College||Ankeny, IA||2-year, Public||Diploma, Certificate||$3,913 in-state, $7,825 out-of-state|
|Community College of Allegheny County||Pittsburgh, PA||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,999 in-district, $7,298 in-state, $10,440 out-of-state|
Sources: *School websites and National Center for Educational Statistics
School Selection Criteria
Consider the following when looking for welding school:
- Students should choose schools accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges; the Council on Occupational Education accredits programs throughout the country as well.
- It's important to enroll in a school that offers the proper curriculum, such as for either skilled or unskilled welders. While unskilled welders generally perform repetitive tasks that require no special knowledge, skilled welders understand how to use different types of metals and work with computers.
- Students may also want to take into consideration the duration of the program, since welding programs can range from two months at the certificate level to two years at the associate's degree level.
- Because many employers prefer students with experience using welding tools, the school's affiliation with local businesses and unions is an important consideration, and internships may help graduates find work.
Certificate or Diploma in Welding Technology
Technical programs focus on the actual process of welding, and students learn to use the school's welding, brazing and soldering machines. Some certificate and diploma programs are open to enrollment by high school students, while others require students to be at least 17 years old and hold a high school diploma or its equivalent.
Associate's Degree in Welding Technology
Associate's degrees in this field are usually awarded as an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in Welding Technology or as a specialty within an associate's degree program in occupational technology. Associate's degree programs take two years to finish, and the program includes general education requirements in addition to welding coursework. Students take the same welding courses as are in the certificate program.
Welding programs are available at the diploma, certificate and associate's degree levels. Some programs offer internships, which may lead to work after graduation.