Already offered at the diploma level at the college’s Appalachian Campus in Jasper, the new welding skills lab at the North Metro Campus in Acworth will provide workforce development training for new and professional welders in the region.
“This program is designed to supplement the already successful credit program,” said Jonathan Warner, Chatt Tech's Director of Community and Economic Development. “Interested students can take individual classes or a full curriculum to help them reach their professional goals. Additionally, we can offer customized training for businesses that have specific needs for skilled welders.”
The lab, which opened May 15, will be home to all of the 160 hours of training currently provided.
Classes include an introduction to welding in the workplace, oxyfuel and plasma cutting, introductory and advanced blueprint reading, pipe welding, shielded metal arc welding, gas metal arc welding and gas tungsten arc welding. Prices range from $89 a class up to $849 for a 40 hour class. The complete 160 hour Basic Welding for the Workplace Program costs $2,999. Workforce Investment Act funding is available for those who qualify.
In addition to classes, individuals can prepare for company welding tests at the facility. Booth rental costs $50 per hour, plus the cost of supplies. An industry welding assessment prep is available for $250.
“The need for well-trained welders is already strong and expected to get stronger,” Warner explained. “The welding and joining profession is one of the hardest hit by the skills gap. There are jobs out there for qualified individuals. But there aren’t enough people qualified to fill them.”
In 2008 an estimated 12,660 people were employed as welders in Georgia. This figure is expected to climb to 14,790 by 2018—a growth rate of 1.7 percent per year. However, that does not take into account the number of people needed to fill jobs left open by retirement. In 2009, the average annual wage for welders was $32,200 with most people making between $22,460 and $42,260.
For more information or to register to the Basic Welding for the Workplace Program and classes, call 770-975-4050 or visit Chatt Tech's website.