Helpful Information About Potential Welding Careers & Trucking Jobs

  • Common Questions to Debunk

    Whether you're looking into a welding training program, or coming to the completion of your current welding training program, you might be wondering what to expect in your first year as a welder. Your first year after welder training is full of opportunities, decisions, and questions. These are the four most common questions welders have during their first year on the job:

    1. What certification do I need as a welder?

    The American Welding Society (AWS) provides welder performance tests as a way to let your future employers know that you are qualified for the job at hand. If you're attending California's Advanced Career Institute, along with receiving a Certificate of Completion, you will be provided the opportunity to take multiple AWS tests.

    2. What will I be paid as an entry-level welder?

    In California, entry-level welders can earn between 16 and 25 dollars an hour, which amounts to a base pay of 32,000 to 50,000 dollars a year before benefits and bonuses. Keep in mind, some industries pay welders more than others. For example, in some situations, underwater welders can be paid over a thousand dollars a day for their time and labor. This however, does require additional training and education.

    3. What are my job opportunities as an entry-level welder?

    As a welder, your job opportunities are nearly endless. Almost every industry has the need for welders and the skills they bring. You can work with construction, shipbuilding, aerospace engineering, automobile manufacturing, pipelines, computers and advanced technology, medical devices, etc. With enough experience, passion, and education, you can even work as a welding teacher!

    4. Do I need further training or an apprenticeship?

    The need for further training is completely dependent on your goals within your field. After completing the program at Advanced Career Institute, you will be fully prepared to take your qualification exams and enter the field of welding as an entry-level welder. While on the job, you may see things that you'd like to better understand. You may also work firsthand with engineers who spark your interest in engineering. To better understand what you're working with, or even to further your education to become an engineer, you will need more education and training. Normally, a welder training program replaces the need for an apprenticeship, but in certain specialized fields, like underwater welding, you may be asked to start as an apprentice so as to learn while on the job.   Your first year as a welder will be full of on the job learning and exciting growth opportunities. If you have any questions regarding the welder training program, please feel free to contact the Advanced Career Institute. ACI is excited to help get you started with your Welding Training at 3 of our campus locations; Fresno, Visalia, and Bakersfield.
  • Bus Safety and Positivity for the New School Year

    'Back-to-School' is just around the corner, but kids aren't the only ones getting ready for the school year. Bus drivers are also gearing up (no pun intended) to make their first pick-ups of the season. They are the initial point of contact for new students and their parents on the first day of school. Here are some tips and tricks to make sure those first pick-ups go well for everyone - parents, students, and bus driver!

    Bus Safety First

    The safety of the students is the top priority for the bus driver. Every day, before leaving the garage, it is essential to ensure that the bus is in safe working condition. Checking the crossing lights, crossing arm, emergency exits, windshield wipers, and brakes help to provide a safe ride for the students. Students unfamiliar with safety procedures for embarking and disembarking may need instruction. Dave Butler, a seasoned bus driver, shares his method of teaching students in the article, School Bus Safety Checklist for Bus Driver. "I've been teaching them to... get off the bus...and go ten feet in front of the bus so my eyes can meet [their] eyes and I'll give [them] the universal cross signal for [them] to cross."

    Promoting a Positive Environment

    It is essential to create a positive environment in the first few days of a new school year. Detailing expectations gives the students boundaries for behavior and the bus driver a framework to enforce discipline when needed. Will students be permitted to sit wherever they wish? Is it be acceptable to change their seat mid-ride? Will the use of smartphones and other electronics be allowed? These are questions a bus driver will have to answer before the first day of school. Some bus drivers find that assigned seats help to maintain discipline. Veteran bus driver John Farr likes the assigned seating method since it increases accountability and cuts down on vandalism problems. In the Schoolbus Fleet article, Strategies for Discipline Problems on the School Bus, Farr also encourages bus drivers to compliment students on positive behaviors and not just single out the bad actors.

    Have Fun

    Driving a school bus is a rewarding and exciting career. Bus drivers are an extension of the school and have the critical task of ensuring that the school day begins and ends safely and positively. Bus drivers are not merely taxi drivers, ferrying students to and fro. Instead, bus drivers are among the most influential adults in their students' lives. They are part of the necessary support staff that makes up every successful school. If you are interested in becoming a school bus driver or have any questions, contact us today! Here at Advanced Career Institute, we strive to train adult learners for rewarding careers.
  • Advanced Career Institute Opens School in Bakersfield

    Bakersfield, CA – Advanced Career Institute would like to announce their newest location in Bakersfield, California. Their new school is located at 2925 Mosasco St. Unit B, Bakersfield, CA 93312, the former John Lopez Welding School. ACI had their first welding class start on Wednesday, July 24, 2018. President of Advanced Career Institute, Barry Bither said, “It is with great excitement that I am able to announce we opened with our first welding class in Bakersfield… All of our staff has done a great job getting the new campus off to a great start. We have completed the purchase of John Lopez Welding School and wish John all the best in his retirement. In the next few weeks, we will be diligently working on adding all of our truck driving programs to the new campus. Please welcome the new employees we are adding to the ACI family.” The new Bakersfield Campus will have both Welding and CDL Training. The Welding Training will consist of the Advanced Welding Technology Program that lasts 38-weeks and a new Basic Plate Welding Program that will last 5-weeks. The CDL Training programs at the Bakersfield Campus will consist of their Professional Truck Driver Program, lasting 4-weeks, and the more advanced Agriculture Transportation Training Course lasting 20-weeks. The first transportation class start date will be August 13, 2018. Like all ACI Campuses, Bakersfield students will gain the quality education and training needed to start a new career. Advanced Career Institute programs combine both hands-on experience and in-class technical training. ACI offers financial aid to those who qualify. The Admissions staff will work with every student to determine their eligibility, and then help them apply for financial aid. The Career Services staff will provide students with the tools that are necessary to find employment, which includes helping them search and apply for current job openings. All staff and instructors at Advanced Career Institute are excited about this new school opening in Bakersfield and the potential to help new students begin their careers in trucking and welding. For more information about our Bakersfield Campus and the training programs provided, call us at 661-535-1480.  
  • Be the Solution to the Shortage

    We all know that there's currently a huge truck driver shortage. The need to transport items to and from stores only continues to grow, even as the baby boomers start to retire from their careers, including trucking. Now is your perfect time to step in. You can be the solution to this shortage, and the time has never been better. You're confident that you can handle the big rigs. Now you're ready to take the leap and begin training at Advanced Career Institute. Before you start this journey of a lifetime, let's take a look at some of the traits shared by all top-notch truckers:


    Truck drivers are in it for the long haul. You should be capable of staying alert for long periods of time. If you're able to sustain your energy on long car trips without shaking yourself awake, you have one of the most important assets required of a truck driver.


    You're not distracted by notifications on your phone. You're able to focus your attention where it belongs, on the safe operation of your vehicle. You keep your eyes on the road.

    Excellent Awareness

    You never understood why people make such a big deal out of parallel parking their little cars. You're able to park in tight spaces and maneuver your way through narrow city streets and dark, endless roads - no problem.


    You keep your word and show up on time. It's important to you to get the job done because you know that people are relying on you. In trucking, you must be self-motivated to keep on schedule.

    You're Okay Being Alone

    You enjoy your alone time - in fact, you treasure it. You've always been perfectly happy to do your own thing. If this describes you, trucking may be the ideal lifestyle for you.   If you have all of these traits, you have already begun your journey toward becoming a truck driver! The next step is simple - contact us at Advanced Career Institute to begin training for your goals! You're ready for the job of a lifetime - driving solo and experiencing what life has to offer on the open road.
  • Trucking Industry Misunderstandings

    Over the years, many misconceptions have developed about what it's like to be a truck driver. The truth is that truck driving is growing at a steady rate with opportunities left and right for qualified individuals. Unfortunately, getting some people to think beyond what they have heard or been told, isn't always easy. Here are five common misconceptions about truck driving and the real truth about each.

    1. There's No Money in Trucking

    The truth is that wages for truck drivers are better than ever! Companies are looking for reliable individuals that are properly qualified. Because every company is going after the same talent pool, they are highly competitive when it comes to pay. Often, you can even get reimbursed for your truck driver training classes.

    2. You're Gone all the Time

    While this is the case for some types of drivers, it's important to know that there are all kinds of truck driving jobs. Many of these jobs are regional and/or local that will put you home at the end of your workday. Just because you drive a truck doesn't mean that you have to go across the country for weeks at a time.

    3. It's a Lonely Life

    Truck driving allows for meeting, communicating and working with a lot of different people. Truck drivers will meet new people all the time, with opportunities to share the bond of the road. With modern technology in many trucks, drivers can stay connected and have conversations with just about anyone even while they drive.

    4. Uncomfortable Living Arrangements

    If you look at most of the trucks on the road today, you might notice that there are actually pretty roomy sleeping cabs. Truck drivers don't have to be uncomfortable when they pull over to get some rest. They can only drive a certain amount of time each day, giving them plenty of opportunity for rest in a comfortable environment, even when on the road.

    5. Men Only

    There are a high number of women that drive trucks for a living. The profession is not just for men, with women being accommodated and welcomed in every segment of the trucking industry. Don't let gender get in the way of a very inclusive and equal opportunity profession.   These are just some of the many misconceptions that people have about the trucking industry. If you are interested in taking the next step into the exciting world of truck driving, contact us to help get you started down the path to success in this booming industry.
  • How it will Increase in the Coming Years

    The trucking industry is chronically short of drivers, and that isn't likely to be fixed anytime soon. For someone considering a career in trucking, this is great news. Jobs are plentiful and companies are paying their truckers more than ever.

    Why the Shortage

    The main reason for the driver shortage is the increased need for cargo moving at the same time many baby boomers are aging out of driving jobs. Amazon and Walmart are examples of the increased need for cargo movement, selling increasingly more items by the internet. The economy is humming as well, which increases the number of goods moving over the roads. Additionally, Electronic monitoring and maximum hours rules have increased the number of days it takes to complete longer trips. The improved safety is a plus, but longer trip times also mean an increase in the number of drivers needed.

    Why it will Continue

    At a time when more drivers are needed, there are many older truckers hanging up their driving gloves to retire. Dan Leathers, head of Werner Enterprises, recently told NPR in an interview that the average trucker is 10 years older than the average worker. This means the aging of boomers hits trucking harder than other industries. In their 2017 Truck Driver Shortage Analysis, ATA's chief economist estimated the driver shortage would increase to 174,000 by the year 2026 and that hiring would need to be about 90,000 drivers per year to meet demand.

    How it will Improve

    According to a survey by American Trucking Associations (ATA) of 100,000 drivers, pay for truckers rose 15 percent from 2013 to 2017. And the increase was even better, at 18 percent, for drivers working for private fleets. Improved benefits and bonuses are also being used to attract more drivers. For those entering the trucking profession, that's bright news. If you're interested in a secure job that pays well, or if you're just looking over career options, feel free to contact us at Advanced Career Institute. We'd be glad to talk with you!