Career and Education Opportunities for Stone Cutters in Birmingham, Alabama
Stone cutters can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Birmingham, Alabama area. There are currently 520 working stone cutters in Alabama; this should grow by 5% to 550 working stone cutters in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for stone cutters, which sees this job pool growing by about 2.8% over the next eight years. In general, stone cutters cut or carve stone according to diagrams and patterns.
Income for stone cutters is about $11 hourly or $24,200 per year on average in Alabama. Nationally, their income is about $13 hourly or $27,870 per year. Stone cutters earn less than people working in the category of Stone and Glass generally in Alabama and less than people in the Stone and Glass category nationally.
There are fifteen schools of higher education in the Birmingham area, including one within twenty-five miles of Birmingham where you can get a degree to start your career as a stone cutter. Stone cutters usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a stone cutter if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Stone Cutter
In general, stone cutters cut or carve stone according to diagrams and patterns.
Stone cutters verify depths and dimensions of cuts or carvings to insure adherence to given requirements or models, using measuring instruments. They also drill holes and cut or carve moldings and grooves in stone, in line with diagrams and patterns. Equally important, stone cutters have to carve rough designs freehand or by chipping along marks on stone, using mallets and chisels or pneumatic tools. They are often called upon to lay out designs or dimensions from sketches or blueprints on stone surfaces, by freehand or by transferring them from tracing paper, using scribes or chalk and measuring instruments. They are expected to cut and finish rough blocks of building or monumental stone, in line with diagrams or patterns. Finally, stone cutters smooth surfaces of carvings, using rubbing stones.
Every day, stone cutters are expected to be able to control objects and devices with precise control. It is also important that they see details at a very fine level of focus.
It is important for stone cutters to dress stone surfaces, using bushhammers. They are often called upon to guide nozzles over stone following stencil outlines, or chip along marks to generate designs or to work surfaces down to specified finishes. They also load sandblasting equipment with abrasives, attach nozzles to hoses, and turn valves to admit compressed air and activate jets. Somewhat less frequently, stone cutters are also expected to copy drawings on rough clay or plaster models.
and decide on chisels, pneumatic or surfacing tools, or sandblasting nozzles, and decide on sequence of use. And finally, they sometimes have to move fingers over surfaces of carvings to insure smoothness of finish.
Like many other jobs, stone cutters must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Stone Cutter 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 Mason/Masonry which graduated two students in 2008.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Birmingham, Alabama
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.