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Career and Education Opportunities for Cabinet Makers in Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for cabinet makers. About 4,740 people are currently employed as cabinet makers in Alabama. By 2016, this is expected to grow 16% to about 5,470 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for cabinet makers are expected to grow by about 9.1%. In general, cabinet makers cut, shape, and assemble wooden articles or set up and operate a variety of woodworking machines, such as power saws, jointers, and mortisers to surface, cut, or shape lumber or to fabricate parts for wood products.

Cabinet makers earn approximately $11 hourly or $23,850 yearly on average in Alabama. Nationally they average about $13 per hour or $28,980 annually. Cabinet makers earn more than people working in the category of Furniture generally in Alabama and more than people in the Furniture category nationally.

There is one school within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can study to be a cabinet maker, among fifteen schools of higher education total in the Birmingham area. Given that the most common education level for cabinet makers is some college courses, it will take a short time to learn to be a cabinet maker if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Cabinet Maker

Cabinet Maker video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, cabinet makers cut, shape, and assemble wooden articles or set up and operate a variety of woodworking machines, such as power saws, jointers, and mortisers to surface, cut, or shape lumber or to fabricate parts for wood products.

Cabinet makers match materials for color and texture, giving attention to knots and other features of the wood. They also produce and assemble components of articles such as store fixtures and high-grade furniture. Equally important, cabinet makers have to verify dimensions, and check the quality and fit of pieces in order to insure adherence to given requirements. Finally, cabinet makers prepare and operate machines, including power saws and shapers, to cut and shape woodstock and wood substitutes.

Every day, cabinet makers are expected to be able to control and manipulate objects at a fine level of detail. They need to control objects and devices with precise control. It is also important that they move quickly in order to hold onto or control objects and devices.

It is important for cabinet makers to measure and mark dimensions of components on paper or lumber stock before cutting, following blueprints, to insure a tight fit and quality product. They are often called upon to attach components and subassemblies together to fashion completed units, using glue, dowels, nails, screws, and/or clamps. They also bore holes for insertion of screws or dowels, by hand or using boring machines. They are sometimes expected to trim and scrape surfaces and joints to ready articles for finishing. Somewhat less frequently, cabinet makers are also expected to perform final touch-ups with sandpaper and steel wool.

Cabinet makers sometimes are asked to dip or spray assembled articles with protective or decorative finishes such as stain or lacquer. They also have to be able to apply Masonite and vinyl surfacing materials and perform final touch-ups with sandpaper and steel wool. And finally, they sometimes have to measure and mark dimensions of components on paper or lumber stock before cutting, following blueprints, to insure a tight fit and quality product.

Like many other jobs, cabinet makers must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Birmingham include:

  • Welder. Use hand-welding or flame-cutting equipment to weld or join metal components or to fill holes, indentations, or seams of fabricated metal products.
  • Woodworking Machine Setter and Operator. Set up, operate, or tend woodworking machines, such as drill presses, lathes, and wood nailing machines.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Cabinet Maker Training

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus - Birmingham, AL

Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus, 3060 Wilson Rd SW, Birmingham, AL 35221-1717. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus is a small college located in Birmingham, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,507 students. Lawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus has a less than one year program in Cabinetmaking and Millwork/Millwright.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama
Birmingham, Alabama photo by Eric_in_SF

Birmingham is located in Jefferson County, Alabama. It has a population of over 228,798, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Birmingham, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Birmingham cost $187,300 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, one hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Birmingham, down from two hundred thirty-two the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Birmingham are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and health care. The average travel time to work is about 24 minutes. More than 18.5% of Birmingham residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.6%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Birmingham is 12.5%, which is greater than Alabama's average of 10.7%.

The percentage of Birmingham residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 60.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Williams Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, Westminister Presbyterian Church and West End Methodist Church are all churches located in Birmingham. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Birmingham is home to the Mineral Park Municipal Golf Course and the Cooper Green Golf Course as well as Avondale Mills Park and Smithfield Historic District. Shopping malls in the area include Acipco Shopping Center, Altadena Square Shopping Center and Parkway East Huffman Shopping Center. Visitors to Birmingham can choose from Marriott Hotel Birmingham, Rime Garden Extended Stay Suites and Studioplus for temporary stays in the area.