The welding program at Morton College supports students from start to finish

The welding program at Morton College supports students from start to finish, ranging from scholarships to job placement in a setting that features a state-of-the-art facility with industrial equipment and personalized learning from nationally-certified instructors.

The most recent success story features Alonzo Romero, who has been accepted into a union journeyman apprentice program. Amanda Young, department chair of Morton College’s welding program, explains Romero will be paid, receive on-the-job experience and additional training.

“Alonzo was really committed to learning how to weld correctly,” Young added. “He is terminally curious and always responded well to the suggestions from his instructors.”

The apprenticeship program takes about three to five years to complete. Those in the journeyman field can make up to $55 per hour.

“The union positions are really lucrative,” Young noted. “There’s a lot of good opportunities to learn lifelong skills and make a good living.”

Romero isn’t the only student success story from this year’s classes. Seven other students found jobs in the welding field with a pay range of between $15 to $20 per hour.

Need help paying for class? In addition to financial aid, the American Welding Society provided $15,000 in scholarships to Morton College students. One student had his education paid for through the society’s scholarships.

Classes are offered days and evenings. There are now five certificate programs, requiring between 16 to 40 semester hours to complete.

Certificate programs offered include:
Shielded Metal Arc Welding – 16 hours
Gas Metal Arc Welding – 19 hours
Multi-Process Welding – 22 hours
Pipe Welding – 25 hours
Advanced Welding – 38 to 40 hours

All four of Morton College’s instructors are certified welders through the American Welding Society. They have a combined 75 years of experience in the profession, according to Young.

“We use all industrial equipment – the equipment you would find on a job site,” Young said. “We have small class sizes with a 10-to-1 student-to-instructor ratio.”

The enrollment in Morton College’s welding program has grown to 38. The program, discontinued in the 1990s, was revived three years ago to meet the needs of this emerging profession.

“This shows the demand in welding,” Young said. “They are plenty of opportunities for career growth.”

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