3 Welding Career PathsWelders are not only responsible for constructing much of the major infrastructure of modern towns and cities but also many of the manufactured goods we use every day. From skyscrapers to scooters, welders ply their trade in a wide variety of settings to produce numerous structures and goods. 1
1. IronworkersThe buildings, bridges, and roads we use everyday would not be possible without the work of ironworkers. There are two types of ironworkers: structural iron and steel workers (47-2221) and reinforcing iron and rebar workers (47-2171). Structural iron and steel workers are commonly called “erectors” because they build the steel frames of skyscrapers and other tall structures. They are predicted to have 4 percent job growth through 2024. Reinforcing iron and rebar workers are nicknamed “rod busters” because they often work with the rods of steel rebar that serve to strengthen the concrete foundations of bridges, highways, and buildings. Job growth is set at 23 percent for them through 2024. 2 3
2. Sheet Metal WorkersWhereas ironworkers manipulate metal at great heights, sheet metal workers (47-2211) usually perform their duties at ground level and often indoors. There are several different types of sheet metal workers. Fabrication sheet metal workers report to factories and shops to produce precision sheet metal parts for a range of industries, such as medical device manufacturing. Installation sheet metal workers install metal roofs, gutters, and sidings, as well as the ductwork that distributes heated or cooled air throughout a building. Maintenance sheet metal workers clean and repair ductwork to ensure it operates correctly and efficiently. Testing and balancing sheet metal specialists perform similar tasks to maintenance sheet metal workers, as well as heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics and installers (49-9021). Sheet metal workers are predicted to have 7 percent job growth through 2024.
3. PipefittersWhen you turn on the shower nozzle in the morning to bath or switch on the burner to your gas stove to fix breakfast, you have plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters (47-2152) to thank. These professionals install and repair the pipes that carry gases and liquids from, to, and within factories, businesses, and homes. As you may know, plumbers work with pipes that carry water in commercial and residential buildings. They may also install the fixtures and appliances that water pipes run to and from, such as bathtubs and dishwashers. Since pipefitters install and maintain pipes that convey gases, chemicals, and acids, they tend to work in industrial, manufacturing, and commercial environments. Steamfitters, for example, install the pipe systems used to generate power with high-pressure steam. Job growth for all of these tradespeople is expected to be 12 percent through 2024. 4 5
Get Started on the Path to a New Career
Fill out our form to learn how we can help you change your life.
Training for a Career in WeldingThe careers outlined in this article are just a few of the opportunities available for those with welding training and experience. While some employers hire individuals and provide on-the-job training to them, many prefer candidates who have received formal training from a trade school. The path to a career in welding is bright for those with the right credentials. 6
1 – http://www.careersinwelding.com/welding_fun_facts.php
2 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/structural-iron-and-steel-workers.htm#tab-2
3 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/structural-iron-and-steel-workers.htm#tab-6
4 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/plumbers-pipefitters-and-steamfitters.htm#tab-2
5 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/construction-and-extraction/plumbers-pipefitters-and-steamfitters.htm#tab-6
6 – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/production/welders-cutters-solderers-and-brazers.htm#tab-4
This blog has been labeled as archived as it may no longer contain the most up-to-date data. For a list of all current blog posts, please visit our blog homepage at https://www.rsi.edu/blog/