Is welding a career you’d like to pursue as a career and are wondering how much it would cost to attend welding school? To land your first job in this field, you will typically need to have a certain level of technical training and some work experience.
These requirements are completely understandable because welding causes skills, safety, and concentration.
If you enjoy working with your hands and building things, then welding could be the perfect career for you.
Welders contribute to the construction and repair of everything from the smallest automobiles to the largest ships.
However, to do so, you will need to complete a welding school program to learn the skills necessary to perform this trade.
Your decision to enrol in a welding technical school to gain these skills may prove to be a wise financial decision in the long run.
The question then becomes, how much does welding school cost? Below is a detailed discussion of everything that is required, as well as the prices charged by various institutions.
How to Choose a Welding School
If you want to know how to choose a welding school without getting ripped off,
then this could be the most important message you ever read.
The Cost of Welding School
The cost of tuition to become a certified welder will vary depending on which school you choose to attend.
Tuition fees may also vary depending on a variety of other factors, such as the type of training, the length of the program, and the state in which you live.
Some courses grant certification after completing a seven-month training program, whereas others may take four years to finish.
Typically, welding school tuition fees begin at around $5,000 for courses that last between three and seven months.
College welding programs can cost you an average of $15,000 for courses that last up to 15 months.
A college program may provide more benefits than welding training, which is less expensive and shorter, depending on your preference.
What will you learn from your Welding School Programs?
Welding school is a mix of theory and practice. The exact mix depends on the program in question, but the following will give you a good idea of what’s ahead.
Learn to weld plate and pipe in multiple positions: Welding plates or pipes while they sit on a workbench is one thing.
But, if you want to get ahead as a welder, you also need to know how to weld pipes and plates together in the awkward positions that exist in real-world jobs.
There are separate qualifications for each position, and an excellent school will teach you a broad range.
Learn all the major welding processes: You can be certified in many welding processes, but specific industries only use most.
Some courses teach these skills to help you progress in your career, in case you ever want the option to move into a more senior position.
Questions Before Deciding On A School
There are 5 CRITICAL questions to ask before deciding on a welding school, so you come out making the most money possible in the fastest time possible.
1. What Type Of Welding School Would You Like To Attend?
First, you want to decide if you’ll get certified in pipe welding, plate welding, or combo
welding. When you get a combo welding certificate, this means you can successfully weld on a plate and pipe.
It’s important to note that being 6G certified means you can weld in all of the welding positions, including:
- Uphill welding
- Downhill welding
- Horizontal welding
- Overhead welding
- Flat position welding
Make sure your welding school will give you training on all the major welding processes, including TIG (Gas Tungsten Arc Welding), MIG (Gas Metal Arc Welding), FCAW (Flux Core Arc Welding), and Stick (Shielded Metal Arc Welding).
2. How Long Will It Take Before You Complete the Program?
Welding schools go anywhere from 9 months to 24 months (this depends on whether you go for the associate’s degree).
They can even take as little as 16 weeks to complete, as detailed by Vicki Bell of thefabricator.com.
3. What Types Of Classes Should The Welding School Offer?
Aside from learning the welding processes, and applying these skills in your structural welding classes, look for welding schools that also offers classes on metal cutting (oxy-fuel and plasma), Metallurgy, pipe fitting, blueprint reading (this one is a must because you’ll need to learn to weld symbols), and welding inspection.
4. Will You Be Fighting With Students Over The Use Of The Welding Schools Machines?
This is big. Make sure you ask if there is sufficient welding equipment and welding booths to accommodate everyone.
Some welding schools will pack their classes too full, trying to cram 2 or 3 students into one booth. When you talk to a school counsellor or representative, asking this simple question will save you many headaches.
5. Which Welding Certificate Should You Attain?
Not all welding certificates are created equal. If you want to make six figures welding, you must know which certificate employers will value the most. Make sure you ask your school about getting 6G certified.
This is a straightforward secret, but many welding students get this wrong. Knowing this nugget of truth will allow you to run circles around your peers and make way more money than they do.
Here’s the secret…
It would be best to get certified in pipe welding when researching welding schools and certifications. This is the one area that has been proven to pay six figures.
This is the key to advancing quickly in your welding career while earning the most money possible.
If you walk away with a plate certification, you might work in a shop for $14 an hour. You will not make a lot of money this way.
Continue to use the 6G certificate.
The process takes longer because your skill level must be high enough, but you can graduate from a welding school with a 6G certificate in hand in as little as 12 to 18 months if you have the right training.
Critical Things To Keep In Mind When Choosing A Welding School
When you start your school search, a good place to start is to find companies in your area and ask them which schools they like to hire employees from. This may give you a good idea of which school to attend.
With the shortage of welders, many of these companies will start you out at $50K+ and
offer you overtime. However, the demand is so great for good welders (especially pipe and TIG) that you might not have to fight too hard to get on.
Next, identify some trade schools in your area. Once you’ve found some, you’ll want to request some information. Finally, you’ll want to know these general questions.
- How long does welding school take?
- Where are your welding school locations?
- Do you have a welding school near me?
- What are your welding school prices?
- What are your welding school requirements?
Take a quick tour of the welding shop. You’ll want to see how much equipment they have and how many students attend. Don’t be afraid to talk to the students. Ask them if they like the school, what they don’t like, and if they already have a job
prospects lined up.
Additional Costs Associated with Welding Studies
When looking for a welding school, you must research any additional costs apart from the tuition fees. In addition, there are other costs you may incur, which may include hidden costs and associate fees.
The extra cost may include the following but is not limited to:
- Testing fee: Testing fees, such as certification testing fees, maybe a requirement. The testing fee ranges from $300 to $550 for every test and may be charged independently from the main tuition fees.
- Application fees: The fee gets charged by nearly all schools, and you can expect to incur an average of $125 for an application.
- Housing and Food: If you live far from the school, you can expect to pay more for food and house rent. Depending on the program you enrol in and the school location, you may incur anything between $500 and $10,000. Housing on its own may cost you about $4,000 and above.
- Books and Welding Equipment: The upkeep cost may also include welding equipment and books that you need. The average expenses on books can be $220, while safety and welding equipment may be between $500 and $1,500.
You will purchase your own tools for a successful training program and beyond as a certified welder. On average, your own set of tools will cost you about $400. This cost will also depend on the program you enrol in and the curriculum.
The Cost of Welding Training Courses
Trade education, also known as technical training, differs from white-collar education because it focuses on practical skills. The most significant distinction is that trade education does not require comprehensive and theoretical knowledge to succeed.
As opposed to this, technical education focuses on learning a specific set of skills and then putting them to use as soon as possible to earn a livelihood.
As a result, many welders choose diploma and certificate programs because they are less expensive and provide quicker completion times.
For this example, let’s look at Earlbeck Gases & Technologies, a leading welding school in the mid-Atlantic region, and see how much welding courses cost there. But, again, the cost here may not differ significantly from other institutions throughout the county.
Are you considering applying for a welding scholarship?
When deciding whether to attend welding school, find out if the school offers an associate scholarship program. Scholarship awards can range from $1,000 to $10,000, depending on the specific school and program.
Sometimes, scholarship awards may cover the entire cost of the program’s tuition fees. Organizations such as the American Welding Society and the Delta Technical College award scholarships to deserving students every year.
The American Welding Society awards scholarships worth $1 million to deserving students each year.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does a welding course cost?
Typically, welding school tuition fees start at roughly $5,000 for courses lasting 3–7 months.
Is it worth going to school for welding?
Yes, welding school can be worth it because a postsecondary welding education is increasingly becoming a requirement among employers, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Is welding a high demand job?
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the need for welders is expected to grow by 26 per cent by 2020.
So, is welding a wonderful career?
Welding is an excellent career, and welders commonly praise their profession and extol the many benefits they get from welding as a career.
How do I become a welder with no experience?
If you are looking for a welding job with no experience, a perfect combination for beginners is technical school combined with further practice in a proper environment.
Keep in mind that to become an expert welder, you must put in a lot of time and effort. Welding schools are also an excellent place to learn the skills you’ll need to advance in your career.
You will need to conduct some preliminary research into the costs associated with your preferred welding course option. In summary, the cost of welding schools ranges from $300 to $100,000.