Career & Technical Education

Welding Technology

Program Overview

Program Description
Our Welding program provides tremendous opportunities in new welding development like exotic metal types, laser welding, and working with automated plasma cutters.

Welding is the most common method for permanently bonding metal parts.  Due to its strength, welding is used to construct and repair cars, appliances, buildings, highway bridges, and it is extensively used in petrol-chemical piping.

Skilled welders work from drawings and specifications, set up and create welds, and examine and inspect welds to ensure specifications are met.  Program emphasis is on processes including SMAW, GTAW, GMAW, and structural and pipe welding.  Cowley College provides well-equipped laboratories that enable students to receive instruction in oxyacetylene welding and cutting, shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW), metallurgy, plasma cam cutting and allied processes.

Skills Required:
The Welding program at Cowley College will provide students with measurement and blueprint reading skills, operation of welding and fabricating equipment, applied mathematics knowledge, and effective communication skills.

Career Opportunities:
Most welders work in manufacturing industries that produce transportation equipment, industrial machinery and equipment, and fabricated metal products.  Welders are also employed in the construction of buildings and bridges, and to join pipes in pipelines, power plants, railroads, and refineries.

The Welding Technology program provides students the opportunity to learn practical knowledge and skill competencies associated with welding, metal fabrication and related processes.  Opportunities for those who wish to become welders are predicted to be good through the year 2015, as the number of qualified (certified) welders graduating from technical schools and community colleges is expected to be below the number of job openings (courtesy Department of Labor Statistics 2002).

What Can I Earn in this Field?
The Kansas Wage Survey reported that welders earned an average hourly wage of $13/hour to $28/hour and higher.  Potential earnings depend on the industry, location and qualifications (courtesy Kansas Dept of Commerce, Kansas Wage Survey, 2004).

What Kind of Training and Education is Available?
Both Certificate and Associate in Applied Science Degree programs are available.  A certificate program requires 49 credit hours and an associate of applied science degree requires 64.  Additional information on the welding profession can be found at the Bureau of Labor Statistics

Class Schedule
In addition to technical classes, five related courses are also required for all students.  These include: Applied Economics, Blueprint Reading, Industrial Materials, Technical Math, and OSHA 10.  For AAS degree-seeking students, there are 15 additional specified general education credits required.

The Welding program challenges students to master specific academic and skill related competencies set forth by our advisory committee.  These skills are intended to assure Business and Industry with a qualified and productive employee and to reward the student with responsibility, pride, and the opportunity to enjoy a quality lifestyle.

The Welding program promotes education in welding-related technologies, enhances skill levels, and guides students toward opportunities for advancement in the welding industry.