As any welder knows, welding can be an excellent career. It has a lot of opportunities for advancement and a welder can work just about anywhere they want to. There are many different kinds of welding – from underwater welding to laser welding – and this leaves the field wide open for anyone who wants to learn valuable skills and have an excellent career.
Welding is an excellent career for women who want to have a good paying job with the chance of earning even more. On average, a welder earns about $15.50 an hour. Those who have more specialized skills – such as in underwater welding – or who simply have more skills and experience can potentially earn even more. This is great for any woman who wants to take care of herself, family, or anything else.
Even though welding is an excellent career choice, only about 5% of welders are women. This could be because most women don't see welding as something they can do or it could be simply because women don't realize the potential that is offered with a welding career. If you're a woman considering welding, or just looking for a new career change, there are some things you can do to help you enjoy a career in welding.
First of all, make sure that you are educated. The more training and experience you have, the better off you are. Learn all the facts you can about welding, the hows, the whys, and take classes in all forms. This will make you a more valuable worker and allow you to branch out into other jobs if the one you're currently in doesn't meet your needs.
Always be professional. Remember that welding is a male-dominated field, and the way you dress and handle yourself impacts how you are treated. If you whine, cry, and fuss over everything, you'll be seen the same way as a man who does the same thing – you can't do your job and you have no business welding. You may need to toughen up, meaning learning to deal with some people's crude jokes or overlooking bad language. That being said, while a woman might be working in a male-dominated field, that does not mean she has to take harassment. Learn to speak clearly and let people around you know what is or isn't acceptable to say to you. You'll earn respect and be treated as an equal. The issue of gender in the workplace, welding including, is vanishing rapidly.
A problem that some women have as welders is being proud of what they do. Many times, women are told that they should be home for their children, or they should be puttering around the house or at least in a job that is more feminine. This is some of the worst advice any woman can get, and in the case of women welders, it can make them feel guilty. Remember that if you enjoy welding, there is nothing to feel guilty about. A woman should do what she loves just like any man should, so a woman who chooses a career in welding should feel proud of what she does. If you are proud of your work, it will show and your quality will be better.
Make sure that you learn about all the tools and equipment you'll come into contact with as a welder. Many women are underestimated when they work in a male-dominated field such as welding, but you can easily surprise those who have a tendency to write you off – and earn their respect – if you know at least as much as they do about the trade. Learn how to handle tools properly and how to care for them, ask questions, and then listen to the answers. If you know what you're doing with the tools then you'll be more confident in yourself, your choice to be a welder, and your work. That confidence will show and you'll be a valuable welder to any company.