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The Welding Industry is Lacking Skilled Labor (2012)

Thomas Friedman discussed the challenges of the manufacturing sector in the New York Times and addressed welding in particular, driving home the importance of welders getting the training necessary in order to fill job vacancies. Friedman writes,

“We’re in the midst of a perfect storm: a Great Recession that has caused a sharp increase in unemployment and a Great Inflection — a merger of the information technology revolution and globalization that is simultaneously wiping out many decent-wage, middle-skilled jobs, which were the foundation of our middle class, and replacing them with decent-wage, high-skilled jobs.”

If recent news reports are any indication, there continues to be a rise in welding job opportunities and training programs.

Welding Industry

Dansensor launches new precision gas mixer for welding applications:

“The MAP Mix Provectus, originally designed for producing accurate gas mixtures for MAP (Modified Atmosphere Packaging) in the food processing industry, has been reconfigured to accept argon as one of its gases. This reconfiguration makes it ideal for delivering gas mixtures for a wider range of industrial applications, and in particular for shielding gases in welding.”


Welding Jobs

New Jobs Being Added in Indiana’s Noble County:

“Tenneco, Inc. announced the company’s plans to expand its operations creating up to 105 jobs by 2013. Headquarters will invest 18.5 million dollars in a Ligonier facility to house robotic welding machinery to produce emission control parts for Chrysler. The process to hire engineering support, hand welders, and material handlers should begin in January.”

New Louisiana Welding Company Creates 50 Jobs:

“Stacey Neal, executive director of the Tangipahoa Economic Development Foundation, said the business will be Innerfuse ID Welding LLC. The business will do welding work for offshore industries. In all, 50 jobs will be coming to the area through Innerfuse, including welding jobs that pay between $50,000 and $70,000 a year.”

Skills Gap Evident in Wisconsin:

There is a high demand for welders and other skilled workers: “We saw that companies had to modernize and become more efficient by having smart systems in order to compete internationally, and we knew those jobs would be more technical than normal.”

The Real U.S. Deficit is in Education:

A welding company demonstrates the need for more skilled workers in the years to come, “’I was in the market looking for 10 welders. I had lots and lots of applicants, but they did not have enough skill to meet the standard for armouring Humvees. Many years ago, people learnt to weld in a high school shop class or in a family business or farm, and they came up through the ranks and capped out at a skill level. They did not know the science behind welding,’ so they could not meet the new standards of the United States military and aerospace industry.”


Welding Education

Pittsburgh Technological Institute Announces Welding Technology Program: “Pittsburgh Technical Institute 

(PTI) announced approval today from the Pennsylvania Department of Education to offer a new program in Welding Technology. The 12-month certificate program delivers a variety of welding techniques and certification preparation. Classes begin October 2013. The career-focused program meets an increasing employment demand for skilled welders in industrial and commercial welding and, particularly, welding in the oil and gas industry.”

Department of Labor Grants To Help Fill the Skilled Labor Gap:

“It’s a $2 billion bet on the part of the U.S. Department of Labor — that an
injection of funds into hundreds of community colleges around the country will
fill the skills gap for qualified employees capable of taking technical jobs in
manufacturing, information technology, healthcare, and other professions.”

Welding Boot Camp Preps Workers for Existing Jobs:

“Moraine Park Technical College in Fond du Lac might have the job for you. That is, if you’re willing to go through boot camp. The college is offering an intense, 10-week training program for already available manufacturing jobs. Students will learn the basics of welding and other machine work businesses say could lead to one of those jobs.”


Welding Events

FabTech 2012 Proves Manufacturing Is Coming Back:

“A record high first day attendance, “Sold” signs on equipment and a packed house at education programs and special events were the hallmarks of the recently concluded FABTECH 2012 in Las Vegas, the largest metal forming, fabricating, welding and finishing event in North America.”


Welding Gone Wrong

Black Elk Platform Explosion:

“The explosion and fire occurred when workers were welding a pipe on the deck of West Delta Block 32 platform, which sits in 56 feet of water about 17 miles south of Grand Isle, Louisiana.”

Welder Killed While Working on an 18-Wheeler:

“48-year-old Martin Medellin… and two other men were working under the big-rig when the jacks holding it gave way.  Two men got out and tried to use jacks to lift the truck off of Medellin, but the jacks broke.  Workers then used forklifts, but by that time it was too late. ”




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