Michigan is a burgeoning site for industrial jobs and opportunities. Among these are many openings for welders in the state. If you’ve ever considered starting a career as a welder in Michigan, it may be overwhelming to try and figure out where to start. Learn about the schools, programs, and certifications that can help you get started.
What Does a Welder Do?
Welding can refer to a wide breadth of tasks, but it most commonly involves the fabrication of metal from two or more separate pieces. This fabrication is done by applying a high heat tool, such as a MIG welder, and joining the pieces together. Welders usually complete this task in accordance with blueprints and project plans that dictate how the metal must be fabricated.
Welding Schools Near Me in Michigan
Enrolling in a school program is one of the fastest ways to dive into a welding career in Michigan.
The MIAT College of Technology welding program prepares students for welding work in various industries.
- Location: Canton, MI
- Phone number: (800) 447-1310
- Programs available: Welding Specialist Certificate
- Program duration: Nine months to one year
- Average cost: Contact the school for more information
Students at Northwestern Michigan College can choose from three different paths in the Welding Technology program.
- Location: Traverse City, MI
- Phone number: (231) 995-1000
- Programs available: Level I Welding Technology Certificate, Level II Welding Technology Certificate, Associate of Applied Science in Welding Technology
- Program duration: One year to earn Level I or II certificate, two years to earn an associate degree
- Average cost: $8,280 annually for in-state students, $10,491 for out-of-state students
The Hanson Technology Center at Lake Michigan College equips welding students with state-of-the-art equipment to hone their skills.
- Location: Campuses in Benton Harbor, Niles, and South Haven
- Phone number: (269) 927-1000
- Programs available: Certificate of Achievement in Welding Production Technology
- Program duration: One year
- Average cost: $6,743 annually for in-state students, contact program for out-of-state tuition
Welding Career Opportunities in Michigan
Welders in Michigan can pursue job opportunities in manufacturing — one of the pillars of the state’s economy. There is a need for production welders in particular throughout Michigan. This job entails joining together various metal pieces as part of the larger manufacturing process. Welders are also needed to care for the manufacturing machinery that is used in production plants.
How Much Do Welders Make in Michigan?
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that welders can expect to make $22.60 per hour, or if they are salaried, $47,010. Information from job postings indicates that wages for welding jobs in Michigan can be as high as $58,743.
Major Employers of Welders in Michigan
There are many industrial employers in Michigan that rely on welders. Some of the companies that employ the most welders include the following:
- Fisher Dynamics: Welders needed for manufacturing vehicle seating, average pay of $20.23 per hour
- Stanley Black & Decker: Welders needed to perform maintenance on machinery, pay starts at $20.00 per hour
- Bandit Industries, Inc.: Welders needed for manufacturing wood chippers, pay starts at $17.00 per hour
How to Become a Certified Welder in Michigan
Becoming a certified welder is a great way to advance your career prospects and develop new skills. In addition to the state’s own certification program, there are two professional organizations — the American Welding Society (AWS) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) — that offer certification. AWS certification is tailored specifically to welding professionals, and you can become certified by passing the SENSE Level I Entry Welders examination.
Do You Need a License to Be a Welder in Michigan?
Welders are certified in the state of Michigan by the Michigan Department of Transportation. The certification program is overseen by the Structural Fabrication Unit, and welders must complete private testing in order to meet the criteria. Welders are limited to the type of work that their level of certification allows.
Michigan Welding FAQs
- How long does it take to become a welder?
The time it will take to become a welder in Michigan depends on your chosen career path. If you apply for a school training program, you may be able to complete the program and start a job in as little as six months. Generally, though, it takes anywhere from one to two years to establish a welding career.
- Does a welder need insurance in Michigan?
Welders in Michigan don’t need to buy an insurance policy if they’re working as an employee. If you happen to go into business as an employer, however, you will need to research Michigan’s requirements for workers’ compensation coverage and liability insurance. You can easily request a free commercial insurance quote from our partners using the tool below.
- Who can I contact if I have questions?
Anybody who aspires to become a welder in Michigan can connect with more resources by reaching out to their local union. The UA Local 333 serves the entirety of mid-Michigan and offers professional training and job resources. They can be reached at (517) 393-5480.
For More License and Career Guides
To find out how to become a Welder in another state, start here.
For information on other trades in Michigan, click on a link below to learn more about the licensing requirements: