There were 9,440 employed welders in Oklahoma as of May 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.1
What steps did they have to take to start a welding career in Oklahoma?
Most probably graduated from high school before completing welding training programs through a trade school, college or vocational program. In addition to their formal training, many welders choose to apply for certification through the Oklahoma Department of Labor. While state certification isn’t required to work as a welder in Oklahoma, it is an option for those who want to add that credential to their resume. 2-8
See more about the welding certification requirements in Oklahoma below.
How Do I Become a Certified Welder in Oklahoma?
To become certified by the Oklahoma Department of Labor, applicants must take and pass a weld test at an approved testing facility.3 After passing the test, the next step would be to submit a Welder Certification License Application, along with a $25 application fee and a valid form of identification.4
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How Long Does It Take to Become Certified in Welding?
Sometimes in the trade professions, a certain number of work hours are required to qualify for a license.7 For example, to work as a Journeyman Electrician in the state of Oklahoma, the Construction Industries Board requires 8,000 hours of qualified on-the-job experience.7
To become certified in welding in Oklahoma, you would just need to pass the weld test and apply for a certification card.4
How long would it take to learn the skills to pass the weld test? This may be highly individual. Typically, a high school diploma or GED is the only formal education required to work as a welder.8 Then, welders often learn their technical skills from another learning institution, such as a trade school, community college or even some branches of the U.S. Armed Forces.8
Length of training may vary depending on the focus of the training program. For example, Tulsa Welding School offers three different types of welding training programs between 7 and 14 months long at its Tulsa, Oklahoma, campus.
Without any prerequisites, workers simply need to gain the welding skills needed to pass the welding certification test.3
How Long Is a Welding Cert Good For?
Once you pass the Oklahoma welding certification test, the certification card is valid for one year.3 You will need to renew the license every year if you want to remain certified in the state of Oklahoma, but it is not legally required to maintain certification.3
You can send in a renewal form up to 90 days before the current license expires, along with a $25 renewal fee.3 If you send in the form after the current license has expired, there is an additional $10 fee.3 The renewal form can be sent in the mail or brought into the department in person.3
What Is the Best Welding Certification to Have?
The best welding certification to have can depend on…
- Where you are located
- What your state or regional governing agencies require
- What your employer requires
- What your welding career advancement goals are8
In Oklahoma, a good welding certification to have is the official state welding license issued by the Oklahoma Department of Labor.4,5
In addition to a state-issued license , welders may choose to get additional welding certifications.8 The American Welding Society (AWS), for example, offers a Certified Welder program, which offers many different options for specific welding certifications, such as in SMAW, GMAW or FCAW welding processes.9
The AWS welding certifications do not have any educational prerequisites.10 Anyone who has gained the right welding skills is eligible to take the certification tests.10
Having AWS certifications may be beneficial because it shows an employer that a welder has the skills needed to do a specific job, which means a secondary welding test may not be necessary.10
What Are the Opportunities for Advancement for a Welder?
The welding industry has different opportunities for advancement for welders, including becoming a Certified Welding Inspector. With 1 year of welding training from a vocational school and 4 years of welding work experience, you would be qualified to take the AWS Certified Welding Inspector exam.11
A welding inspector may be responsible for a number of high-level welding management duties, such as reviewing documents, inspecting the pre-welding environment, overseeing the welding process and inspecting finished welds.12 These people are responsible for managing welding projects.12
In Oklahoma, the Department of Labor issues Welding Inspector certification licenses and outlines rules and regulations for welding inspectors in the Oklahoma Welding Act.4
Other opportunities can include gaining the skills, experience and advanced welding training to prepare for careers as a robotic weld technician, welding instructor, welding engineer, welding equipment salesperson, pipefitter, iron welder or sheet metal worker.12
Prepare for Welding Certification in Oklahoma at TWS’ Tulsa Campus
Want to work as a welder in Oklahoma? Tulsa Welding School can help you prepare. We offer 3 welding training programs at our Tulsa, Oklahoma, campus. As a welding student, you could have the chance to practice core welding processes: SMAW, MIG and TIG.13
Get in touch with a TWS rep today to see more about training for a welding career in Oklahoma. Call 855-981-7313.