Welding Career Guidance

What does a Welder do?

A Welder permanently joins pieces of metal through welding processes, of which there are many. In addition to fusing metals, a welder also repairs metal parts, as well as grinds and solders materials. Sometimes a welder will spend the day cutting, shaping, and combining materials to make different parts for a variety of industries, for e.g. construction, engineering, automobile, or aerospace fields.

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What are the tasks and duties of a Welder?

  • Fabricate and assemble metal structures and equipment through the use of welders, cutters, shapers and measuring tools.
  • Produce metal products according to customer or employer specifications.
  • Use multiple welding machines to repair and maintain metal equipment and structures of various sizes.
  • Read and interpret diagrams, sketches and blueprints to determine operations, required materials and timeframes for projects.
  • Set up, operate and maintain welding equipment.
  • Understand and implement personal and company safety measures by wearing specialized goggles, helmets and gloves.

What skills and abilities are required to become a Welder?

  • Good at working with your hands;
  • Must be very mechanically-minded;
  • Must be able to take exact measurements and work accurately;
  • Must have the ability to remain very detail-focused at all times;
  • Must work methodically and excel in problem-solving situations;
  • Must be able to perform many different tasks on the job site (i.e. multi-task).

What are the working conditions of a Welder?

Welders frequently are exposed to potential hazards. They use protective clothing, safety shoes, goggles, helmets with protective lenses, and other devices to prevent burns and eye injuries and to protect them from falling objects. Some welders are isolated for short intervals while they work in booths constructed to contain sparks and glare. Welders often work in a variety of awkward positions, having to make welds while bending, stooping, or working overhead. In some settings, however, working conditions vary and few hazards or discomforts are encountered.

What are the minimum entry requirements to study Welding at a TVET College?

At a TVET College, the normal entrance requirements for the Welding course are:

  • NC(V) Programme:

A Grade 9 Certificate + college requirements set per programme.

  • NATED Programme:

Nl admission - Grade 9 Certificate + college requirements set per programme .

N4 admission - Grade 12 with a pass in Mathematics + college requirements set per programme OR an NC(V) Level 4 Certificate in Engineering and Related Design.

What should I do if I want to study Welding?

  • Visit or contact a TVET College nearest to you to enquire about the entrance requirements to do the Welding course;
  • Visit Welding training centres and companies to gain more knowledge about the field and what it entails;
  • Contact DHET Career Development Services to provide you with free quality career information, advice and counselling services on 086 999 0123 or e-mail: careerhelp@dhet.gov.za
  • Go for an aptitude test to help understand if a career in Welding is for you; and
  • Attend Career Exhibitions in your area to liaise with higher learning institutions and obtain application forms.
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