Welding is performed in a variety of industries, such as construction, automobile assembly and plumbing. Becoming a member of a welding union ensures that a person has met rigorous performance and training standards. Union membership also brings with it an organized representation for fair employment standards. The best way to become a member of a welding union is to complete an apprenticeship program that is offered through local union halls.
Things You'll Need
- High school diploma or GED
- Internet access
Visit the websites of trade unions such as the iron workers, pipefitters, plumbers and steamfitters to find out how and where to apply for apprenticeships that they offer. These apprenticeships usually last three to five years and offer paid training.
Visit your local trade union office to fill out an apprenticeship program application. Local union offices have different days and times that they accept applications, so be sure to check your local office's application policy.
Wait until you are notified of your testing date. After passing the apprenticeship program test, you will then be contacted by the union office for an oral interview.
Wait until you are contacted by the local office that your apprenticeship program has been established. After passing the oral interview, an applicant is placed in an eligible pool of candidates that is ranked by test scores.
Attend classes two nights a week and work 40 hours a week until you complete the apprenticeship program. After five years, you will move from an apprentice to a journeyman welder, with a significant raise in pay.
Tips & Warnings
- To qualify for an apprenticeship program, you must be at least 18 years old and have a high school diploma or have passed the GED.
- If you are still in high school, take classes in math, drafting, machine shop and mechanical drafting to help your chances of securing a welding apprenticeship.
- Apprenticeship recipients are selected based on their application testing scores, with those with the highest scores being chosen first.
- Photo Credit John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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