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Learning About the Welding Job Market in the ... - UW-Milwaukee

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<strong>Learn<strong>in</strong>g</strong> <strong>About</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> <strong>Job</strong> <strong>Market</strong><strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> jobs are <strong>in</strong> demand.$12.22: Start<strong>in</strong>g wage for welders$18.53: For experienced welders<strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> student at Gateway Technical College.Photo: Mark Uttech Local <strong>Job</strong> OutlookTo help you plan for jobs of today and <strong>the</strong> future, we regularly contact employers <strong>in</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>astWiscons<strong>in</strong> to f<strong>in</strong>d out what k<strong>in</strong>ds of jobs and what levels of education, tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g and experience arerequired. This report gives you a “snapshot” of weld<strong>in</strong>g jobs available now and <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> future <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong>seven counties of Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong> – Kenosha, <strong>Milwaukee</strong>, Ozaukee, Rac<strong>in</strong>e, Walworth,Wash<strong>in</strong>gton, and Waukesha counties.This is an excit<strong>in</strong>g time to th<strong>in</strong>k about careers. Many area companies are look<strong>in</strong>g for newworkers to replace those who are retir<strong>in</strong>g and to meet expansion needs. While it is possible to f<strong>in</strong>d aweld<strong>in</strong>g job right out of high school, you will have a greater choice of careers and higher pay if youcomplete technical college tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g. In <strong>the</strong> weld<strong>in</strong>g field you have <strong>the</strong> opportunity to start as an entrylevel worker and with more experience advance to very difficult types of welds with average salaries of$50,000 or more.1


Welders are work<strong>in</strong>g throughout <strong>the</strong> region. At <strong>the</strong> time of <strong>the</strong> 2000 U.S. Census, about half ofall weld<strong>in</strong>g jobs were located <strong>in</strong> <strong>Milwaukee</strong> County, 31 percent were <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> WOW (Waukesha,Ozaukee and Wash<strong>in</strong>gton) counties, and 20 percent were <strong>in</strong> Rac<strong>in</strong>e, Kenosha and Walworth counties.Number of <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> <strong>Job</strong>s <strong>in</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong>by County: 2000 CensusKenosha343<strong>Milwaukee</strong>2,615OzaukeeRac<strong>in</strong>eWalworthWash<strong>in</strong>gton278411303573Waukesha7830 500 1,000 1,500 2,000 2,500 3,000<strong>Job</strong>s for welders, cutters and weld<strong>in</strong>g mach<strong>in</strong>e operators are expected to <strong>in</strong>crease five percent <strong>in</strong><strong>the</strong> next 10 years. Open<strong>in</strong>gs for welders <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> seven-county Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong> region will occurma<strong>in</strong>ly due to <strong>the</strong> retirement of current workers. While some weld<strong>in</strong>g jobs will be elim<strong>in</strong>ated byautomated systems, manual welders with a wide variety of skills will still be needed for metalfabrication, ma<strong>in</strong>tenance, repair and o<strong>the</strong>r work <strong>in</strong> manufactur<strong>in</strong>g.MATC <strong>in</strong>structor Larry Grossdemonstrates robot weld<strong>in</strong>gsystem to a student at <strong>the</strong> WestAllis campus.Photo: MATC/Sue Ruggles2


In December 2007 <strong>the</strong> University of Wiscons<strong>in</strong>-<strong>Milwaukee</strong> Employment and Tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g Instituteconducted a targeted survey of fabricated metal product manufactur<strong>in</strong>g firms and larger manufactur<strong>in</strong>gcompanies. For this survey fifty employers reported a need to hire 228 welders with<strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> next sixmonths and ano<strong>the</strong>r 142 welders <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> year follow<strong>in</strong>g. The types of welders needed by <strong>the</strong>secompanies are listed below.Anticipated Open<strong>in</strong>gs for Welders <strong>in</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong>(50 Companies Report<strong>in</strong>g Welder Open<strong>in</strong>gs)Anticipated Open<strong>in</strong>gsNov-Dec2007Jan-June2008July-Dec2008Jan-June2009 TOTALMIG welder 19 63 16 12 110Flux cored arc welder 4 25 20 19 68TIG welder 6 20 13 4 43Set up welder 7 16 6 4 33Welder fabricator 5 11 7 7 30MIG/TIG/flux cored arc 5 10 6 6 27Welder fitter 0 8 2 0 10Spot welder 3 3 3 1 10MIG/TIG 2 3 2 3 10Production welder 3 4 2 0 9MIG/flux cored arc 0 2 0 2 4Welder burner 0 1 1 1 3Plate and weld <strong>in</strong>spector 0 2 1 0 3Pipe welder 0 2 0 0 2F<strong>in</strong>ish welder 1 0 0 0 1O<strong>the</strong>r: 1 2 4 0 7TOTAL WELDERS 56 172 83 59 370Categories of welders are identified based on <strong>the</strong> official American <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Society (AWS) def<strong>in</strong>itionsof <strong>the</strong> processes: Gas Metal Arc <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> – GMAW (previously known as Metallic Inert Gas-MIG),Gas Tungsten Arc <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> – GTAW (previously known as Tungsten Inert Gas-TIG), and Flux CoredArc <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong>-FCAW. For more background on weld<strong>in</strong>g careers, go to <strong>the</strong> American <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Societywebsite at www.aws.org/w/a/education/career.html.3


MATC <strong>in</strong>structor Richard Tupta expla<strong>in</strong>s weld<strong>in</strong>g techniquesto a student at <strong>the</strong> West Allis campus.Photo: MATC/Sue RugglesAlong with <strong>the</strong> ability to complete weld<strong>in</strong>gtasks, all employers are look<strong>in</strong>g for applicantswith good work habits and ability to follow<strong>in</strong>structions. Many of <strong>the</strong> open<strong>in</strong>gs requiretechnical college tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g and certification, andoften 1 to 3 years of weld<strong>in</strong>g experience isspecified. The locations reported by surveyedcompanies for recent and current job open<strong>in</strong>gs areshown on <strong>the</strong> map below.Snapshot of <strong>Job</strong> Open<strong>in</strong>gs for Welders <strong>in</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong>(50 companies report<strong>in</strong>g open<strong>in</strong>gs for Nov. 2007 – June 2008)Source: University of Wiscons<strong>in</strong>-<strong>Milwaukee</strong> Employment and Tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g Institute TargetedSurvey of Welder <strong>Job</strong> Open<strong>in</strong>gs and Anticipated Needs <strong>in</strong> Sou<strong>the</strong>ast Wiscons<strong>in</strong>, conductedfor <strong>the</strong> Waukesha-Ozaukee-Wash<strong>in</strong>gton Workforce Investment Board, December 2007.4


Tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>gSome companies will hire and tra<strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir own welders on <strong>the</strong> job while o<strong>the</strong>rs will only hireexperienced welders or those with certification. The education levels of welders currently employed <strong>in</strong><strong>the</strong> region show that <strong>the</strong> opportunities for those with less education are limited. Most welders are highschool graduates (76%) and 28% have some college or a college associate degree. Only 24% ofcurrent welders did not complete high school.<strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> jobs titles and skill levels are determ<strong>in</strong>ed based on your ability to demonstrate specificproficiencies when tested. Certification of advanced skills is a commonly accepted way ofdocument<strong>in</strong>g your ability to perform welds as specified by welder classification. Gateway TechnicalCollege, <strong>Milwaukee</strong> Area Technical College, Mora<strong>in</strong>e Park Technical College, and Waukesha CountyTechnical College offer welder tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g and certification programs for entry level to advance tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g,and some with a special emphasis. Most of <strong>the</strong> technical college programs are runn<strong>in</strong>g at full capacityand some are plann<strong>in</strong>g for expansion.Location of Technical College Campuses with <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Programs5


<strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> <strong>Job</strong> MobilityIn a two-semester college diploma program, you will learn to set up and operate weld<strong>in</strong>gequipment, read bluepr<strong>in</strong>ts, and help ma<strong>in</strong>ta<strong>in</strong> weld<strong>in</strong>g equipment for manufactur<strong>in</strong>g and construction<strong>in</strong>dustries. Short term certificate programs provide an <strong>in</strong>troduction to types of welds. In some cases<strong>the</strong> employer will conduct <strong>the</strong> necessary tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g on <strong>the</strong> job. Technical tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g <strong>in</strong> weld<strong>in</strong>g offers jobmobility <strong>in</strong>to a number of occupations.<strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> <strong>Job</strong> Mobility (from Gateway Technical College)Concurrent Occupations for weld<strong>in</strong>g program students:1. Chipper2. Tacker3. Welder’s Helper4. Production WelderAdvanced Occupations for Technical Diploma graduateswith extra tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g or experience:Occupations for Technical Diploma Graduates:1. Arc Welder2. Production Welder3. Tig Welder4. Mig Welder5. Oxy-Acet WelderOccupation for those with higher level degrees(such as bachelor’s degree):1. Apprentice Welder2. Certified Welder3. Shop Welder4. Comb<strong>in</strong>ation Welder5. Weld Supervisor6. Set-Up Welder7. <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Inspector8. <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Technician1. <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Eng<strong>in</strong>eer2. <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Instructor3. <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> TechnicianSource: Gateway Technical College curriculum at www.gtc.edu/docs/curriculumSheets/31-442-1C.pdf.Test candidate Roger Bratberg takes <strong>the</strong> performancecomponent of <strong>the</strong> CertifiedRobotic Arc <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong>(CRAW) exam at <strong>the</strong> MATC.Photo: MATC/Sue Ruggles.6


Acquir<strong>in</strong>g weld<strong>in</strong>g skills can open doors to o<strong>the</strong>r careers as well as <strong>in</strong>creased wages. Listedbelow are jobs and pay levels for occupations which require some weld<strong>in</strong>g experience.O<strong>the</strong>r Careers Requir<strong>in</strong>g <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong> Skills (from <strong>the</strong> U.S. Department of Labor)Occupational TitleStructural metal fabricators and fittersSheet metal workersPlumbers, pipefitters, and steamfittersStructural iron and steel workersIndustrial mach<strong>in</strong>ery mechanicsAverageAnnual Salary$35,011$52,041$61,016$52,649$46,863Relevance Score onImportance of <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong>3332242422MATC weld<strong>in</strong>g <strong>in</strong>structor PeterStojanovich demonstratesweld<strong>in</strong>g techniques on a racecar chassis.Photo: MATC/Sue Ruggles7


Us<strong>in</strong>g <strong>the</strong> Internet to Learn <strong>About</strong> Careers <strong>in</strong> <strong>Weld<strong>in</strong>g</strong>The Wiscons<strong>in</strong> technical colleges have <strong>in</strong>formation available at <strong>the</strong>ir campuses and on <strong>the</strong>irwebsites about courses <strong>in</strong> weld<strong>in</strong>g, requirements for diploma and certificate programs, and resourcesabout weld<strong>in</strong>g careers. (Sample websites are shown <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> pages below.)Gateway Technical College (www.gtc.edu)Kenosha CampusElkhorn CampusContact: Mark Uttech uttechm@gtc.eduLocation: 3520 30 th Avenue, Kenosha, WI 53144Enrollment: 10 sessions are offered with a capacityof 16 per session; 4 sessions are held <strong>in</strong>both <strong>the</strong> a.m. and p.m.; 2 sessions areheld on Friday night and Saturday.Capacity: 160Useful start<strong>in</strong>g website: www.gtc.edu/pages/displayProgram.asp?pid=30-442-2Contact: Kenneth Karwowski karwowskik@gtc.eduLocation: 400 County Road H, Elkhorn, WI 53121Enrollment: 56 <strong>in</strong> even<strong>in</strong>g sessions; 20 <strong>in</strong> daytimesessionsCapacity: 76<strong>Milwaukee</strong> Area Technical College (www.matc.edu)Contact: Mark Koehler KoehlerM@matc.eduLocation: Downtown <strong>Milwaukee</strong> Campus (700 West State Street, <strong>Milwaukee</strong>, WI 53233)West Allis Campus (1200 South 71st Street, West Allis, WI 53214)Oak Creek Campus (6665 South Howell Avenue, Oak Creek, WI 53154)Capacity: 80 (20 per session, morn<strong>in</strong>g and afternoon at <strong>the</strong> Downtown <strong>Milwaukee</strong> Campusand West Allis Campus; 12 at Oak Creek Campus.Useful start<strong>in</strong>g website: www.matc.edu/documents/catalog/weld<strong>in</strong>g_technical_diploma.htmlMora<strong>in</strong>e Park Technical College (www.wptc.edu)Contact: Larry Clark lclark@mora<strong>in</strong>epark.eduLocation: Beaver Dam Campus (700 Gould Street, Beaver Dam, WI 53916)Some <strong>in</strong>troductory apprentice courses are held at <strong>the</strong> Fond du Lac Campus(235 N. National Avenue, Fond du Lac, WI 54936)Enrollment: Two sections are offered: 1 <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> even<strong>in</strong>g, 1 dur<strong>in</strong>g <strong>the</strong> day.Sessions start quarterly throughout <strong>the</strong> regular school year.Capacity: 28 (14 <strong>in</strong> each section)Useful start<strong>in</strong>g website: www.mora<strong>in</strong>epark.edu/pages/441.aspWaukesha County Technical College (www.wctc.edu)Contact: Michael Shiels, mshiels@wctc.eduLocation: Ma<strong>in</strong> Campus, 800 Ma<strong>in</strong> Street, Pewaukee, WI 53072Capacity: 40Useful start<strong>in</strong>g website: www.wctc.edu/web/areas/trades/weld<strong>in</strong>g/weld<strong>in</strong>g.php8


Gateway Technical College at www.gtc.edu9


<strong>Milwaukee</strong> Area Technical College at www.wctc.edu10


Mora<strong>in</strong>e Park Technical College at www.mptc.edu11


Waukesha County Technical College at www.wctc.edu12


Jessica Cooper is tra<strong>in</strong>ed <strong>in</strong> a weld<strong>in</strong>g program partnership <strong>in</strong>volv<strong>in</strong>g <strong>Milwaukee</strong> Area Technical College,Genesis High School, and Tramont Corporation.Photo: MATC/Sue RugglesThis booklet was prepared by <strong>the</strong> University of Wiscons<strong>in</strong>-<strong>Milwaukee</strong> Employment and Tra<strong>in</strong><strong>in</strong>g Institute for <strong>the</strong>WOW Workforce Investment Board, Inc. and <strong>the</strong> Regional Workforce Alliance under a WIA Incentive grant toRWA from <strong>the</strong> Wiscons<strong>in</strong> Department of Workforce Development. We appreciate <strong>the</strong> assistance provided by <strong>the</strong>Gateway Technical College, <strong>Milwaukee</strong> Area Technical College, Mora<strong>in</strong>e Park Technical College, andWaukesha County Technical College, and <strong>the</strong> 169 employers participat<strong>in</strong>g <strong>in</strong> <strong>the</strong> December 2007 targetedsurvey of welder job open<strong>in</strong>gs and assessment of need.

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