Weld to Work

What is the Weld to Work Initiative?

Weld to work is the combined effort of:

All three schools work together to provide a comprehensive, affordable welding education designed to quickly train students for real jobs.

Choose your Weld to Work goal

Weld to Work offers three levels of education:

Tuition averages just $3,670 per semester.

Level 1 Welder

Welding Certificates • 10 Weeks (1 Semester)

Learn the basics of select welding processes

LEVEL 1 welders have a solid foundation in production welding technology learned through hands-on courses. Welding certificates are process-specific. Holders of a welding certificate show they have the necessary entry-level competencies for work in production welding and metal fabrication.

Students can choose to attend the LEVEL 1 program of their choice at NTC, Nicolet College, or MSTC. All allow advancement to LEVEL 2, if desired.

Job Possibilities

  • Construction trades apprentice
  • Maintenance worker
  • Repair welder

Pick your school: Northcentral Technical College, Nicolet College, or Mid-State Technical College.

Level 2 Welder

Technical Diploma • 32 Weeks (2 Semesters)

Become proficient in several welding processes and print reading

LEVEL 2 welders develop additional skills and techniques in welding and cutting, as well as print reading, welding metallurgy, inspecting, critical thinking, and problem solving. Earning a welding technical diploma demonstrates hands-on competency in occupational skills.

Students can complete a LEVEL 2 program at NTC, Nicolet College, or MSTC after completing LEVEL 1 at any of the three schools. All allow advancement to LEVEL 3, if desired.

Job Possibilities

  • Production welder
  • Maintenance welder
  • Job shop: layout/welder
  • Welding sales and service
  • Combination welder

Pick your school: Northcentral Technical College, Nicolet College, or Mid-State Technical College.

Level 3 Welder

Associate Degree • 2 Years (4 Semesters)

Achieve mastery of welding processes, print reading, and fabrication

LEVEL 3 welders expand their education into advanced areas. An associate degree in welding fabrication and robotics indicates the holder has completed an extensive program that combines technical skills with related general studies.

After completing LEVEL 1 and LEVEL 2 at NTC, Nicolet College, or MSTC, associate degree students must complete LEVEL 3 courses at NTC.

Job Possibilities

  • Weld technician
  • Laser operator
  • Laser programmer
  • Robotics programmer
  • Robotics operator
  • Fabricator
  • Press brake operator

Begin at: Northcentral Technical College, Nicolet College, or Mid-State Technical College.

Reasons to Consider a Welding Career

Be Financially Secure

Local Wage Statistics

In a May, 2014 survey of 36 graduates from central Wisconsin welding programs in 2013, 30 of 31 respondents found employment in the field. They earned salaries between $23,920 and $145,600, with an average of $41,948. (Note: Some graduates were previously employed in the industry.)

National Wage Statistics

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics does a comprehensive job survey every four years. In the 2012 survey, workers in the category of welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers earned a median wage of $36,300. 80% earned between $24,700 and $56,100, with 10% earning more.

Be an Adventurer

Welders willing to travel and/or take on risk can see the world while earning very high pay.

  • Military support welders can start at $160,000 per year, and can make more than $200,000 per year working in the Middle East
  • Traveling industrial pipe welders: $50,000–$185,000 per year
  • Underwater welders: $100,000–$200,000 per year

Be in Demand

Because welders are needed in almost every industry, welders can change industries without starting a new career. Weld to Work can provide you with high-value, flexible skill sets.

Wisconsin Trends

In Wisconsin alone, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects there will be 490 new job openings in welding per year through 2020.

National Trends

The American Welding Society estimates that in the U.S., due to increasing demand and the expected retirement of large numbers of welders now in their 50s, there will be more than 33,000 job openings in the welding industry per year through 2023. That’s over 300,000 job opportunities for welders.

Be What You Want to Be

Welding can get you into a large variety of occupations in many industries, each with opportunities for advancement. Pathways and possibilities include:

  • Welding
  • Inspecting
  • Engineering
  • Robotics
  • Managing/supervising
  • Educating
  • Project Management
  • Sales

Be Part of the Green Revolution

New, green industries are growing quickly, and many older industries are going green. The building and retooling projects involved are increasing demand for welders, making welding an excellent “green-collar” career choice. Be ready with Weld to Work.