Scottsdale, Arizona-based Universal Technical Institute Inc. (UTI) announced Feb. 4 the expansion of its successful Welding Technology program to two additional campuses. The program in Houston, Texas, will open in April, with classes at the Long Beach, California, campus to begin in August. In addition, the company plans to offer Welding Technology at a minimum of one additional campus in 2021, for a total of at least six Welding Technology programs.
“Expanding our welding program is part of our growth strategy, which includes finding innovative ways to attract and serve more students, utilizing space in our legacy campuses and better meeting employers’ growing need for skilled workers,” said Jerome Grant, UTI’s chief executive officer. “Welding broadens our student base and lets us serve a much wider range of industry customers. At the same time, it complements our core technical training business and is consistent with our commitment to quality education that prepares students for rewarding careers.”
Existing welding programs at the company’s Avondale, Arizona, Dallas, Texas, and Rancho Cucamonga, California, campuses are performing well and are operating at or near full capacity. On average, once a welding program is fully ramped, it should increase UTI’s current overall new student starts by approximately 1.5 percent per program.
Welders are increasingly sought after in industries ranging from automotive fabrication and motorsports to aerospace, energy and manufacturing, and are particularly in demand for major infrastructure projects including bridges, highways, office buildings, schools, pipelines, power plants, refineries and spacecraft. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that there will be more than 488,000 job openings for welders by the year 2028.
UTI’s 36-week Welding Technology program includes state-of-the-industry technology along with hands-on training and instruction that prepares students for certification via the American Welding Society. The program is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and gives students the knowledge and skills to work in the transportation, construction, structural, pipe and fabrication industries. Courses include Principles of Welding, Gas Metal and Shielded Metal Arc Welding, Pipe Welding and Safety.