Welding is a technique used to fuse materials together with heat. This is a specialized field that requires knowledge of energy sources, welding techniques and the environment. This field goes back to the Middle Ages and was used by blacksmiths to fuse metal together. People living in Jacksonville, Florida have a variety of welding schools to choose from to obtain the necessary knowledge and certification to succeed in this field.
Candidates for welding school must have a high school diploma or GED before applying to a program. It is preferable that applicants have some knowledge of electrical engineering, excellent analytical skills and a willingness to work in a variety of challenging environments. Upon entering a program, applicants must complete basic math, language and reading work before moving on to welding techniques such as shielded metal arc pipe welding, basic arc welding and advanced welding techniques.
List of Welding Programs in Jacksonville, FL
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- Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (11-month diploma program)
Application Process and Cost
Florida has approximately 31 schools offering welding certification programs. Florida State College at Jacksonville offers welding classes that requires 1,170 contact hours. Upon completion, students will possess 38.5 workforce credits. The average cost for in-state students is $2,790.00 and $9,903.00 out-of-state. Daytona State College is just outside of Jacksonville and also offers a certification courses. Also a four year program, this college costs $3,371.00 in-state and $12,441.00 for out-of-state students.
Welding is a highly specialized field that requires hands-on training, so there are no online courses for beginning welders. However, those who are interested in obtaining a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in welding after certification have options to attend online. Grand Canyon University and ECPI University are two top online schools that offer extended education in this field. These schools typically provide weekly classes online, reading assignments, lectures and written assignments including final projects and examinations. To attend an online class, students must have a computer, a reliable internet connection, school based software and online books and study materials. Teachers interact with students via email or Skype and are available to help them succeed. Attending an online class requires a great deal of discipline and excellent time management skills so that coursework is on time and the student gains the most benefit from the course.
Maintaining Certification and License Renewal
Students must take an exam after completing the coursework to obtain a license or certification in welding. This exam requires students to answer questions and demonstrate techniques during testing. After obtaining a degree and license, it is necessary in most states to take continuing education classes to stay abreast of the most current information in this ever changing industrial field. Most states require those with a degree and license in welding to take a recertification exam every two years.
Salary and Job Prospects
Pay Scale estimates the hourly salary for welders in most states to be $10 to $23.00 per hour, which comes to $25,000 to $67,000 a year. Those who have a degree in this field will be at the higher end of the pay scale. Welders can work in steel manufacturing, distribution, plastics manufacturing, metal manufacturing and tool manufacturing with a degree and license in welding. Those with a head for business may opt to become a self-employed welding contractor after college, as well.
Industrial careers such as welding are fast-growing and always in demand. Those who complete college classes and obtain licensure have a variety of manufacturing careers to choose from in the United States and in other well populated countries. As with any field, a high quality education at a reputable Jacksonville welding school is key to success.