Welding Certifications

Welding has solidified its position as a stable and valuable trade. There is a consistent demand for skilled welding professionals, with an average of 42,600 job openings projected every year through 2032 (according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics).


If you’re considering getting into this profession, you’re in the right place. This article provides comprehensive insights on how to become a welder, stressing the importance of certifications and training for this career.

How to Become a Welder

1. Research the different types of welding jobs

Starting a career in welding means entering a field where you can work with many kinds of metals. This job lets you join metals like mild steel, stainless steel, and aluminum.


The choice of welding technique you’ll use depends heavily on the metal in question and the importance of the job at hand. Here’s a brief overview of some common welding methods you’ll want to become familiar with:


  • MIG/Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW)
  • Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW)
  • Flux-Cored Arc Welding (FCAW)
  • Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW/TIG)

2. Take welding courses

After deciding on a specific welding path, you’ll need to look into the appropriate educational background, generally starting with at least a high school diploma or GED.


For people in Chicago, finding a good welding school in Chicago like the ETI School of Skilled Trades should be your next step. These types of schools teach you what you need to start with or without any prior welding experience.

3. Earn your welding certificate

While not all states mandate official certification or licensing for welders, it’s highly recommended to pursue certification. Having one is good for a few reasons:


  • It shows employers you know how to weld well.
  • It makes it easier to get better jobs.
  • It helps you stand out when looking for work.

4. Gain hands-on experience

Nothing beats the value of hands-on practice in welding. Applying your skills in real-world situations cements your knowledge and prepares you for the day-to-day tasks of a professional welder. Experience can come from apprenticeships, internships, or on-the-job training.


Apprenticeships and internships are a great way to find permanent jobs in the welding industry.

Types of Welding Certifications

Certifications are more than just pieces of paper; they are proof that a welder has met strict standards and is ready to produce high-quality work. With the right training and assessment, these certifications can help any welder stand out in the competitive job market.


Listed below are some of the certifications from the American Welding Society, that welders can secure to showcase their abilities:


  • Certified Welder (CW): This is a basic credential you can obtain without prerequisites. It tests your welding skills across procedures used in various industries, such as pipeline construction or sheet metal work.
  • Certified Welding Inspector (CWI): Regarded as a mark of leadership, the CWI certification is for those looking to ensure quality in welding projects and possibly oversee other welders.
  • Certified Welding Educator (CWE): If teaching and training are your strengths, the CWE prepares you to create instructional material and lead welders through their educational journey.
  • Certified Radiographic Interpreter (CRI): This certification is for welders specializing in analyzing radiographic images to assess weld quality.

Start Your Welding Career Today

Now that you know the essentials for launching a career in welding, the next natural step is to pick the right school. Finding a quality institution that fits your needs makes the difference when it comes to acquiring the skills and knowledge necessary for success.


Offering programs that can be completed in as little as 7 months, ETI positions you for entry into the welding field much sooner than you might expect, giving you a solid foundation and hands-on experience. Beyond training, ETI provides job placement assistance for graduates, giving support beyond the classroom. Enroll in the ETI welding program today and start your journey into this stable and rewarding career.