Technical workers who join and shape pieces of aluminum, steel and other metals using lasers and torches are called welders. There are many different types of welders; these include industrial pipeline welders, underwater welders, aerospace welders, military support welders and nuclear industry welders.

If you are inquisitive, creative, love repair work, and don’t mind standing on your feet for too long, then becoming a welder would be best suited for you. Take a look at this guide and learn how to become a welder in New York.

What Does a Welder Do?

Welders usually perform the following duties:

  • Read and interpret blueprints and project plans.
  • Weld components using semi-automatic or manual welding equipment.
  • Test and examine structures and welded surfaces to identify flaws.
  • Maintain machinery and equipment.

The Procedure of Becoming a Welder in New York

The procedure of becoming a welder in New York consists of the following stages:

  1. Get a High School Diploma/GED

The first step is to obtain a GED or a high school diploma, which will enable you to get admission in a vocational training school.

  1. Enroll in an Accredited Welding Program

Many employers now prefer to hire individuals who have graduated from a vocational training school and are armed with the required technical skills and knowledge. In order to get these skills, you will have to enroll in a certificate course or an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S) in Welding Technology.

These programs will teach you how to interpret industrial drawings, operate thermal and electrical cutting processes and perform welding operations safely. Some of the modules taught during these programs include Weld Joint Design, Weld Metallurgy, Pipe Welding and Gas Metal Arc Welding.


  1. Get a License and Start Working

You will need a New York City Welder License to land a job. The following requirements must be met to get the license:

  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • Should be able to read and write in English.
  • Should have a good moral character.
  • Should be able to complete either the American Welding Society’s set of exams or The New York State Department of Transportation’s set of exams.
  • After obtaining the appropriate NYSDOT or AWS welder certifications, you must be able to clear the background check. The Licensing & Exams Unit will require a long list of documents from you in order to conduct the background investigation. These documents include: Photo ID (driver’s license), proof of residence, social security card, birth certificate, physical exam form and NYSDOT/AWS certification card etc.

If the department thinks that you have met all the requirements and are fit to become a welder, you will be given a license.

Requirements to Become a Welder

In order to become a welder, you will be expected to meet the following requirements:

  1. You must hold a GED or a high school diploma along with a certificate or an Associate’s degree in Welding Technology.
  2. You must hold a state license.
  3. You must possess the following qualities, skills, and knowledge:
  • Project management skills.
  • Problem solving skills.
  • Analytical and mathematical skills.
  • Attention to detail.
  • Concentration and focus.
  • Good physical stamina and strength.
  • Excellent hand-eye coordination.
  • Must have extensive knowledge of blueprint reading, arc welding, oxy-fuel welding and TIG welding.

How Much Does a Welder Make in New York?

The career prospects for welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers seem quite bright. The employment data published by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics has revealed that these workers earned an annual mean pay of $48,040 in New York in the year 2018. This figure is higher than the national average of $44,360.

Salary Trend of Welders

The salary data of Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers for three years is stated below:

2016 2017 2018
Annual Mean Salary (NY) $46,300 $47,940 $48,040
Annual Mean Salary (US) $42,450 $43,410 $44,360

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

The table shows that the annual mean wage of welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers in New York has followed an upward trend from 2016 to 2018, and the state average has also followed an upward trend during the same time period. More importantly, the annual mean salary in New York is higher than the national annual mean income for the same occupation.