There are many great welding schools in the United States and many could be considered top welding schools for a number of reasons. Hobart Institute of Welding Technology, Lincoln Electric Welding School and Tulsa Welding School are considered to be the top rated welding schools for a number of reasons.
The Top Welding Schools In The United States
In this article I will give you an in depth look at each school through the eyes of an experienced welder. I am not affiliated with any of these schools and this article is only my opinion and these welding schools are not listed in any particular order. They are all excellent schools!
Notice: Tulsa Welding school has been removed from the list. We will be posting a new school very soon.
#1 Top Rated Welding School – Hobart Institute of Welding Technology
Hobart welding school is located in Troy, Ohio just north of Dayton, Ohio off of I-75. They are a globally recognized welding school that has been producing some of the best welders for over 80 years since 1930. They offer a wide variety of training from pipe welding, plate welding, welding certification testing and weld inspection.
Their track record of graduating over 100,000 skilled welders with a current placement rate of about 84% (from their 9 month welding program) is amazing in today’s world. Many colleges are lucky to achieve a 60% placement rate. Hobart has also just opened a new student resource center to better help graduates find jobs faster so I would expect to see the placement rate to climb higher. If you are serious about your welding career you will have no problems finding a job that pays well.
Welding Training at Hobart
Hobart is known as one of the top welding schools mostly do to their exceptional training. The offer over 20 different entry level welding training programs, the best and most in depth program being the Combination Structural & Pipe Welding.
The Combination Structural & Pipe Welding program is 38 weeks/1330 hours long and runs from 8:00 am till 5:00 pm. You will receive in depth training with all of the major welding processes including:
- Oxyacetylene Welding & Cutting – You will spend 2 weeks learning how to weld and cut metal with a torch. Being able to cut smoothly and efficiently is a very important skill to have.
- Shielded Metal Arc – This welding process is also known a Stick or SMAW welding. For 16 straight weeks you will learn how to weld pipe and plate in every position including overhead and 6G welding positions.
- Gas Tungsten Arc Welding – Also known as GTAW or TIG welding. You will have 9 weeks of hands on TIG welding. Quality, specialized TIG welders can make a lot of money after graduation. You will learn how to TIG weld pipe and plate on a variety of base metals including mild steel, stainless steel, aluminum and titanium. It is great to see that Hobart welding school offers this much TIG training on alloys and exotic metals.
- Gas Metal Arc Welding – GMAW or MIG welding classes will run for for 4 weeks and will cover pipe welding as well as plate. MIG welding is a bit easier than TIG and Stick welding so the traing period is shorter.
- Flux Cored Arc Welding – Also known as FCAW. This traing period will be about 2 weeks long. After becoming proficient with MIG welding FCAW will come easy to you!
In classroom learning at Hobart
Most of your time will be spent in a welding booth but welder need other skills also. Hobart makes sure that you get the knowledge that you need to excel once you get out into the real world. This is another reason Hobart one of the top welding schools in the country.
Welding Technology & Blueprint Reading
Most welders will have to understand how to read and interpret blueprints. You will also learn about different welding symbols and mechanical drawings. This will be a two week class.
Weldability of Metals, Ferrous & Nonferrous
This class runs for only one week but is important. You will learn about different metals and alloys. Being able to identify different types of metals in the field can be very helpful when making weld repairs. Preheating and post-heat treatments will also be covered.
Final thoughts about Hobart Institute of Welding Technology
If you are serious about welding, want a lifetime career and have a chance to attend Hobart I would. They have excellent reviews, a long history of traing welders and give you the skills you need to make a good living.
#2 Top Rated Welding School – Lincoln Electric Welding School
Located in Cleveland, Ohio since 1917 Lincoln Electric Welding School has been turning out highly skilled welders with a very wide variety of skills. Lincoln Electric differs a bit from Hobart welding school and Tulsa Welding School in the way that they do not offer just a single “learn everything” welding program. You can pick and choose from any of the courses you want to take or you can enroll in a more traditional welding program. This allows you to custom tailor your education to your needs and desires. Lincoln Electric’s dedication to the welding industry over the last 90 plus years has made them one of the top welding schools in the United States.
Welding courses, classes and programs offered by Lincoln Electric Welding Schools
As I said above Lincoln Electric’s Welding School offers many different classes. Here are a few of their more popular welding classes.
- Basic Plate and Sheet Metal Welding (6 Weeks) – Great for those interested in structural steel welding.
- Pipe Welding – ASME or API (4 weeks) – You can choose between ASME and API pipe welding standards.
- Motorsports – Advanced Materials (5 days) – Learn about and get hands on training welding exotic metals like Titanium, Magnesium and Inconel.
- Advanced Submerged Arc Welding (3 Days) – This is not underwater welding, it is similar to MIG welding but under a bath of flux.
You can take a look at Lincoln’s Welding School training guide here, it lists every program and class they offer with in depth information.
Lincoln Electric’s comprehensive welding program
If you have no experience welding and are just getting started then Lincoln’s Comprehensive Welding Program would be a great option for you. It is 15 weeks long and will cover the following.
- Plate Welding
- SMAW/Stick Pipe Welding
- Torch and Plasma Cutting
- GTAW/TIG Welding
- FCAW/ Flux Cored Arc Welding
Final thoughts about Lincoln Electric’s Welding School
As with all the top welding schools they offer excellent welding traing. Where this welding school really excels is with welding exotic metals. Having the skills to weld metals that most people can’t can put you in a very lucrative position. You will make more money as a welder if you can find a niche.