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Welding/Metal Fabrication
Program Code: 31-457-1


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Technical Diploma: 36 Weeks, 31 Credits
Appleton and Oshkosh Campuses
Financial Aid Eligible


Career Opportunities

As a metal fabricator and welder, you lay out, shape, form and weld various types, sizes and shapes of metals. You fabricate and assemble structural metal products such as framework or shells for machinery, ovens, tanks, pipes, stacks and parts for buildings according to job orders or blueprints. Among the skills you must have are techniques of layout using triangulation and parallel and radial line development.

You understand the physical properties of metal and must be able to figure the stock allowances for thickness when setting up a machine for the fabrication of metal parts. Such machines may include shears, press brakes, rollers, drill presses, lasers and abrasive water jet cutting machines and automatic welding machines. You know how to set up and use equipment to cut, shear and saw, form, roll and bend for welding of metals. Fabricators must also have knowledge of trade mathematics including basic geometry and trigonometry. You must be able to read shop drawings and welding symbols, and have a basic understanding of shop drawings, sketching and basic welding metallurgy.

Typical jobs that you may obtain after graduation involve metal fabrication and welding including structural steel welding, welding with various processes, and cutting. You will usually find these occupations with construction firms, large metal equipment manufacturing companies, or small businesses that manufacture specialized products such as sheet metal cabinets, desks, shelving, pipes, ducts, fire truck builders, yard and garden equipment, snow blowers and equipment for material transfer or food products machinery.


Program Description

You will be able to start the Metal Fabrication/Welding program at the beginning of either semester in which openings occur. Full-time students will attend 28 hours per week in the Metal Fabrication/Welding lab and theory. Students may also enroll in morning (20 hours), afternoon (20 hours) or evening (16 hours per week), which is considered half-time, provided there are openings. Half-time enrollment, however, would lengthen the time to complete the program. You are required to furnish your own safety glasses and small hand tools as well as welding helmets, cutting glasses, gloves and welding leathers.

Note: You will enroll in Metal Fabrication/Welding as a half-time or full-time option; and in one or more of the related courses depending on the recommended program sequence and specific entry date.


Program/Plan Admission Requirements


Program Outcomes

The primary goal of the Metal Fabrication/Welding program is to prepare the student for employment as an entry-level metal fabrication/welder. Graduates will demonstrate proficiency in and will be able to:

  • Understand fundamental concepts of welding and welding safety.
  • Set-up and operate a welding power source.
  • Weld on various types and thickness of materials.
  • Weld in all positions.
  • Weld a test coupon in accordance to a written welding procedure which will pass the requirements of the specified welding code.
  • Interpret welding symbols.
  • Interpret shop drawings.
  • Set-up and operate manual and CNC metal cutting equipment.
  • Set-up and operate manual and CNC fabrication forming equipment.
  • Set-up and operate CNC contour cutting equipment.
  • Draw a shop drawing of a product which anyone skilled in the trade could fabricate.
  • Build products, from shop drawings, acceptable to industry standards.
  • Draw layout patterns using pattern drafting techniques.
  • Run a fabrication job shop.
  • Fabricate and repair parts using thermal cutting equipment.
  • Understand the metallurgy of welding.

Program Offered at These Locations
  • Appleton—1825 N. Bluemound Drive
  • Oshkosh Advanced Manufacturing Center—4200 Poberezny Road (part-time nights)

Helpful High School Courses

Math, welding, metal fabrication, mechanical drawing and blueprint reading are useful.


Contact Us

For additional information, call or e-mail Jim Berry at (920) 735-4898 or Bob Ellenbecker, Oshkosh at 920-232-6049.

For additional program/admission information, View Program Plan.





Students must follow the program curriculum in place at the time of enrollment into the program.
If you have questions, contact your advisor.

2014-15 Educational Program