Welding is a hot career field at community colleges, reports Community College Times.
At Wallace State Community Collegein Alabama, enrollment in the welding program has doubled since 2007.
“In my 15 years at Wallace State, every graduate who has wanted a job has gotten a job,” said welding instructor Jim Thompson. “A good, skilled welder can get a job anywhere.”
Across the nation, community colleges are expanding welding programs. Owens Community College in Ohio and Randolph Community College (RCC) in North Carolina have opened new welding centers. Mobile welding stations have opened at Flathead Valley Community College in Montana and Pitt Community College in North Carolina.
The National Center for Welding Education and Training, which is located at Lorain County Community College in Ohio, received a $2.9 million grant from the National Science Foundation to train welders in advanced techniques. The industry needs about 30,000 new welders annually, Weld-Ed estimates.