10 Best Welding Trade Schools in the USA 2024 | How to Apply


Studying at one of the best welding trade schools in the United States, you can pursue a career as an assembler, welding technician, welding inspector, robotics repair and maintenance inspector, tech salesman, or one of many other specialist welders.

Whether you are looking for a great but short one-year course or a multi-year comprehensive program that includes a component of work experience, we offer you the best welding trade schools that offer training in many course duration options as part of this list.


What is Welding?

Welding is a technique of joining metallic materials with or without filler, with the help of heat, and with or without the use of pressure. 

The first forms of welding technology were discovered around 1000 AD, but most of the modern methods available today began to be used in the 1900s, especially during the two world wars.


Welding, as a technical or engineering course, is a subject that focuses more on training skills for its students. Schools usually focus on the practical aspects of welding techniques and, in some cases, provide space for learning the principles. 

Unlike academic institutions, welding schools are evaluated through exclusive membership in international welding certification institutions.

Do You Need a Certificate to Be a Welder in the USA?

Those who want to finish school quickly will be happy to know that welding is just a short professional program that you go through and does not require excessive years of college. 


Some companies even offer a welding school as part of their work, and they promote those who complete the course to higher-paying positions in the company. 

Many careers that work in shipyards or even offshore companies in the United States offer training services for employees, and this is a great opportunity for those who want a permanent job, as well as for those who may want to trade and start  their own welding business one day.

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What is Welding Trade School Cost?

Typically, tuition fees at a welding school start at about $5,000 for courses lasting 3 to 7 months.  By comparison, college welding programs can cost you an average of $ 15,000 for courses lasting up to 15 months. 

Depending on what you want, the college program offers more benefits than welding training, which is less expensive and shorter.

Different states have different certification requirements for welding work, each with its own fees.  Some states require students to complete a state-sanctioned program to start working as a welder, and some do not.

Can You Become a Welder Without Doing an Apprenticeship?

After training, many welders go for apprenticeships. The apprenticeship can be formal or informal, costs from 0 to 1300 US dollars, and lasts 3-5 years.

Welding usually requires a state license, and qualifications depend on the state or municipality. The license fee is between $24 and $250.

For example, Pittsburgh charges $ 87 for a welding license, which is on the low side. Mississippi, on the other hand, charges $ 200 plus $50 for each additional license obtained.

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How Long are the Best Welding Trade Schools in the USA?

Some welding programs have different amounts because the programs are slightly different.  The Journeyman Welder program is a 7-month program that prepares students for entry-level welding. 

The Journeyman Welder II program is a 10-month program that expands the painter’s training with another 10 weeks of practical pipe installation training.

Do You Need a License to Be a Welder in the USA?

In Illinois and Missouri, where MTI offers programs for welding workers, there are no licensing requirements.  This means that the welder does not need to pass any state exam to get started in these states.

However, some employers seek certificates from accredited organizations or individuals with specific specialties. For example, the American Welding Society (AWS) offers a certified welder exam.  This exam determines your welding performance. 

Passing this exam confirms to employers that you are an AWS certified welder. The app costs $50.  AWS also offers other types of exams at different prices for different purposes.

ALSO CHECK: 15 Best Welding Schools in Houston

10 Best Welding Trade Schools in the USA

After thorough research, rankings, reviews, and value offers, we have curated a list of the best welding trade schools in the USA from the best MOOC platforms online.

Below is a list of the best welding trade schools in the USA.

#1 Reid State Technical College

With only two semesters of full-time study and 28 semester credit hours, you can earn a short-term certificate in welding technology from Reid Technical College.  But this is not the only option. 

If you want to get a complete program, you can get a full certificate of welding technology in the field of pipe welding with four semesters of full-time study and 58 credit hours.

But if you want more than just a certificate, they also offer a specialist in professional engineering (AOT). 

It will take six semesters of full-time work and 77 credit hours, but you will receive a core technical major in welding technology and a secondary major in industrial power / electronics that will fully prepare you for a lifelong career in manufacturing and construction. 

You will receive a list in the National Register of Training. You can also obtain voluntary certification through the American Welding Society or the National Center for Construction Education and Research.


#2 Mesa Community College

Whether you want to get a certificate and get started, or you want to spend a little more time to get a degree, Mesa Community College has a program that suits your interests. 

With only 15 credits, you can get your Certificate of Completion (CCL) in the field of welding technology. 

Alternatively, you can obtain a CCL in industrial welding after completing 26 credits.  But if you want a degree, you can get your Lawyer in Applied Sciences (AAS) in welding with 64-73 credits.

Any certificate will prepare you for hands-on training for a welding career. Still, if you receive an AAS, you will be ready to take exams and obtain welder qualification certificates through AWS, ASME, and API, or as a certified AWS welding inspector.


Read More: 15 Best Welding Schools in San Diego

#3 Lincoln Electric Welding School

Offering eight standard courses and advanced training courses in welding, Lincoln Electric Welding School is a specialized school that specializes in welding and will prepare you for a successful career in this field. 

Lincoln Electric is one of the biggest names in the field of welding equipment, so it is not surprising that they are also one of the best welding schools.

Only well-trained and highly qualified instructors will teach you here, and you will receive much practical training under supervision while you are here. 

Upon completion of the course, you will receive a certificate of completion, which has a respectable reputation for Lincoln. 

This can be a great way to help you get one of the best vacancies in the welding industry.  At Lincoln School of Electric Welding, you will learn everything from the basics of entry to welding to advanced welding techniques such as submerged arc welding.  Their comprehensive program will surely prepare you for a lifelong career as a welder.


#4 Hobart Institute of Welding Technology

Hobart is another big name that is respected in the world of welding.  They are known for producing high-quality welding equipment, but that is not all they do in this field. 

The Hobart Institute of Welding Technology is their welding school with over 80 years of welding experience.  They are a special welding school that teaches nothing else, so their reputation is global.

Thanks to the industry-leading training program, you can complete it in less than a year and obtain a certificate accredited by the American Welding Society. 

Moreover, they offer employment assistance to their graduates to ensure they can use their new welding skills professionally, turning their training into a viable career. 

Whether you want individual courses or a full 24-week program, the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology is a great school that will prepare you for a satisfying career in welding.


Read More: 15 Best Welding Schools in Florida

#5 Advanced Welding Institute

The Advanced Welding Institute offers accelerated programs that include hands-on training to give you the best education that will prepare you for a new career in welding. 

You will receive individual attention to ensure that each student has the tools to succeed at the highest level. 

You will spend eight hours or more each day in the welding shop, a modern educational institution designed to teach you in the most exciting way possible.

Small classes with a low student-teacher ratio ensure you get a lot of personalized instruction to help you improve quickly. 

By offering 15- and 24-week full-time welding programs and certifications from AWS, ASME, and API, you’ll get the education you need to be competitive in the industry. 

When you graduate, they will even help you find a job so your skills are not wasted.


#6 Modern Welding School

With ACCSC, ASME, and AWS accreditation, your certification from the School of Modern Welding will open many doors for you. 

Offering full-time day programs as well as part-time evening programs, you will be educated in all different types of welding with a schedule that suits your life.

The full program is 30 weeks and 900 hours, and the evening program is 45 weeks and 665 hours.  When you’re done, you’ll be good at welding techniques like acetylene welding, structural welding, pipe welding, MIG, TIG, and more. 

They also offer a variety of workshops to help you go beyond certification and ensure you never miss the latest and greatest improvements in the field.


Read More: 15 Best Welding Schools in Arizona

#7 Welder Training & Testing Institute

With accreditation from the ACCSC and the American Welding Society, the Welder Training and Testing Institute is one of the best places to obtain welding certificates and gain recognition from potential employers. 

As one of the best welding trade schools in the USA, they offer a variety of programs and certifications, depending on what you want to study and in which field you would like to pursue a career.

Their welding courses are their main career program and take 900 hours to complete.  It is ideal for beginners with little or no welding experience to get the education needed to get a job as a welder. 

The combination welding program is a bit shorter, 740 hours, and does not include some things, such as reading drawings and assembling pipes.  They also offer advanced welding techniques courses to take your professional skills to the next level with specialization.


#8 Tulsa Welding School

With three different campuses spanning the United States, the Tulsa Welding School is the largest in the country. 

Their seven-month professional welder program is available in both Tulsa and Jacksonville, and it consists of 80% hands-on welding experience. 

You will spend only one day a week in class.  At other times, you will learn from experienced professionals, performing welding yourself in a controlled environment.

A flexible schedule will help you integrate education into your busy life.  You will cover all major types of welding, including structural welding, pipe welding, MIG and Flux welding, TIG welding, and more.  At the Texas campus, you can take a welding specialist program. 

When you complete any of their welding programs, you will be able to obtain a certificate accredited by the American Welding Society (AWS) that will show prospective employers that you know your business and have taken the time to obtain the most prestigious certification you can find.


Read More: 15 Best Welding Schools in Las Vegas

#9 Davis Applied Technology College

With an employment rate of 72% after completing a welding technology program at Davis College of Applied Technology, you are more likely to have a career as a welder right after school. 

Their certificates are accredited by the American Welding Society, so your time is well spent knowing that future employers will look at your certificates with the respect that AWS-accredited graduates deserve.

Here you can learn all types of welding, including gas arc welding (GMAW), arc welding (FCAW), shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), tungsten gas arc welding (GTAW), and more. 

Because they are a technical institute, your specialized welding certificates will have extra weight, but not as much as if they left the welding school only.


Read More: Best Welding Schools in Iowa| A Detailed Guide

Best Welding Trade Schools in Michigan


Welding, as a technical or engineering course, is a discipline that focuses more on training skills for its students.  Schools usually focus on the practical aspects of welding technology and sometimes provide space for theoretical training. 

Unlike academic institutions, welding schools are evaluated through exclusive membership in international welding certification organizations. 

Many institutions have gone beyond supporting international standards for welder training and further developed the industry. This post has presented you with the best welding trade schools in the USA, where you can use your money for training and doing research to make sure you are investing in a complete welding education.

Delta Technical College, for example, combines classroom lectures with laboratory experience.  This combination is very important for students who want to put what they have learned into practice and hone their skills while in school. 

Delta Tech Welding Training teaches MIG welding and flux cored welding and provides students with welding and pipe production skills.

Best Welding Trade Schools FAQs

Is it Worth Getting a Degree in Welding?

You can make good money as a welder, but you also need to be willing to invest in the right education and equipment.  This means that you do not agree to cheap machines, accessories, and protective equipment, as they may harm you or your business in the future.  These are just some of the factors that determine how rigid welding can be.  If you do not focus on the above points, it will make your training time much longer.

What Does it Take to Become a Welder?

You’ll need to understand basic chemistry and the ins and outs of welding, including best practices and tips for being more successful. It takes years to master welding, at least.  Just like learning to master any other, welding takes time and energy to learn to do it right and efficiently.

What are the Best Ways to Maintain Your Longevity as a Welder?

Wearing a respirator is one of the best ways to maintain durability as a welder.  Like smoking, your body just can’t handle the exposure to welding fumes after so many years.  COPD is common among older welders who have not used respirators in their careers.

Is Welding Fumes Dangerous to the Body?

Prolonged exposure to welding fumes can also weaken the immune system.  This makes welders more likely candidates for certain cancers and diseases.  Wearing a respirator protects your lungs and prevents harmful compounds from harming the rest of the body.

However, the problem is that when you weld or heat galvanized steel, the vapors evaporate because the zinc coating melts at a much lower temperature than steel.  Metal vapor fever is a condition that causes flu-like symptoms when someone inhales vapors from welding, soldering, or cutting galvanized steel.



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