Only about 5.8 percent of working welders are females, according to the American Welding Society. Companies are doing more outreach to women to help replace the welders who are approaching retirement. Welding is a career that can offer many benefits, but there are still a few misconceptions about women doing this type of work.
Myth 1: Companies Don’t Want to Hire a Female Welder
Metal fabricating companies are desperate to find good welders to replace the workforce that is rapidly retiring now. Both women and men are great candidates for these positions. Anyone can have a promising career in welding, as long as they get the proper training. Having additional skills, such as blueprint reading, will help you be a more valuable employee for prospective employers. Keep in mind that there may not always be welding jobs available in your area, and you may have to move to a more industrial city to find the job you want.
Myth 2: Male Co-Workers Don’t Respect Female Workers
Although male welders may have resented women coming into the field in the past, the younger generation is less apt to hold on to these gender differences in the workplace. They may have worked alongside women in the military or in other fields of work. They respect anyone who does good work and can work well as part of a team.
Myth 3: Welding Work is Hard, Dirty and Dangerous
Not all shop settings are alike. Some companies may not have state-of-the-art equipment or the safest environment. However, there are welding positions in forward-thinking companies with clean, climate-controlled environments and manageable materials. Female and male welders can benefit from staying fit in order to manipulate the heavy materials. They should also take safety classes to ensure that they can protect themselves and others in the work environment.
Myth 4: There’s No Room For Professional Growth in Welding
Many welders become supervisors or consultants. They work on projects that involve welding processes for construction or manufacturing of products. In addition, welding offers the opportunity of starting your own business, which can bring increased financial benefits.
Women in welding is still a relatively new concept, but it is fast becoming the norm as more companies look for reliable people who can perform the highly technical work that welders do every day.
Interested in joining the community of women welders? Learn more about our welder training program today!