According to the American Welding Society (AWS), there are currently 600,000 welding jobs available in the U.S. With the lack of skilled workers, only half of those positions are currently filled. Employers are currently seeking a new skilled workforce with an understanding of fabrication, welding and repair techniques as well as other differentiated attributes. The welding career field has a variety of job levels and responsibilities. Common career opportunities include:
- Fitters: Welders that set up material, pipe or plate, for the certified welder.
- Tack Welders: Fitters that tack the weld joints prior to large weldments.
- Fabricators: Welders who use welding to fabricate items with metal.
- Welders: Welders usually in manufacturing industry, with only one process.
- Combination Welders: Welders that can weld with more than one process.
- Certified Welder: Welder with credentials that prove his ability to repeat 100% weld quality.
- Solders: Welders who work with low temperature material joining.
- Welder Inspector: Those certified to inspect the welding from other welders.
- Welding Engineer: a mechanical engineer certified in the welding specifications.
- Welding Sales: Individuals who work for the suppliers for the welding field.
- Shop Owners: business owners that are established in the welding field.
The Certificate in Welding offered by Great Bay Community College, held at the Seacoast School of Technology in Exeter, New Hampshire, will provide graduates with the ability to meet the needs of entry and intermediate skill levels to acquire sustainable jobs in the field of welding. Upon completion of the program, students may be proficient in the use of welding equipment, set up, and operation for the five major processes; MIG, TIG, Stick, Oxy-fuel, and Plasma as well as many of the auxiliary processes such as; FCAW, Aluminum-TIG, Spool guns, etc. The curriculum will also provide students with a solid range of welding theory, blue print reading, electricity, and fabrication techniques. Upon completion of the program, students will also be prepared for AWS Certification Testing. The program, offered in the evening will consist of three 12 week semesters.
Dual enrollment: Students enrolled in the Welding Certificate program may elect to enroll in the Associate Degree in Technical Studies. Dual enrollment is contingent upon active or graduate status of the certificate. Completion of the Welding certificate satisfies the requirement for the technical specialty core (24 credits) of the Technical Studies degree.
- Complete an application to the program.
- Provide proof of high school completion or equivalent.
Health and Safety Considerations
This program includes work in a welding shop where high temperatures and explosive gases are used. Students will be taught industry standards for safety of themselves and others in the shop, and will be expected to follow all safety procedures. Personal protective equipment must be worn in the shop at all times.
This program includes work in a welding shop and requires participants to physically perform functions that require the following:
- Normal vision for reading instructions and for performing tasks ) corrective vision is acceptable).
- Manual dexterity with both hands; good hand and eye coordination.
- No medical electronic implants such as pace makers are allowed in the welding shop.
Transfer Credit Policy
In addition to Great Bay transfer credit policies, transfer of courses in the Welding program will be evaluated by the program coordinator on an individual basis.