Career and Education Opportunities for Sheet Metal Workers in Billings, Montana
For those living in the Billings, Montana area, there are many career and education opportunities for sheet metal workers. There are currently 480 working sheet metal workers in Montana; this should grow 36% to about 660 working sheet metal workers in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for sheet metal workers are expected to grow by about 6.5%. Sheet metal workers generally fabricate, assemble, and repair sheet metal products and equipment, such as ducts, control boxes, and furnace casings.
A person working as a sheet metal worker can expect to earn about $16 hourly or $33,910 annually on average in Montana and about $19 hourly or $40,290 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for sheet metal workers are better than earnings in the general category of Metal Working and Welding in Montana and not quite as good as general Metal Working and Welding category earnings nationally.
There are four schools of higher education in the Billings area, including one within twenty-five miles of Billings where you can get a degree to start your career as a sheet metal worker. The most common level of education for sheet metal workers is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time training to become a sheet metal worker if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Sheet Metal Worker
In general, sheet metal workers fabricate, assemble, and repair sheet metal products and equipment, such as ducts, control boxes, and furnace casings. They also work may involve any of the following: setting up and operating fabricating machines to cut, bend, and straighten sheet metal; shaping metal over anvils, blocks, or forms using hammer; operating soldering and welding equipment to join sheet metal parts; inspecting, assembling, and smoothing seams and joints of burred surfaces.
Sheet metal workers drill and punch holes in metal for screws, bolts, and rivets. They also lay out and mark dimensions and reference lines on material, such as roofing panels, in line with drawings or templates, using calculators, scribes, dividers, squares, and rulers. Equally important, sheet metal workers have to fasten seams and joints together with welds, bolts, cement, rivets, solder, caulks, metal drive clips, and bonds to assemble components into products or to repair sheet metal items. They are often called upon to decide on project requirements and required methods and materials, in line with blueprints and written or verbal instructions. They are expected to set up assemblies, such as flashing, pipes, tubes, heating and air conditioning ducts and down spouts, in supportive frameworks. Finally, sheet metal workers fabricate or alter parts at construction sites, using shears, hammers, punches, and drills.
Every day, sheet metal workers are expected to be able to visualize how things come together and can be organized. They need to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they prioritize information for further consideration.
It is important for sheet metal workers to maneuver completed units into position for installation, and anchor the units. They are often called upon to shape metal material over anvils or other forms, using hand tools. They also finish parts, using hacksaws, and hand, rotary, or squaring shears. They are sometimes expected to transport prefabricated parts to construction sites for assembly and installation. Somewhat less frequently, sheet metal workers are also expected to lay out and mark dimensions and reference lines on material, such as roofing panels, in line with drawings or templates, using calculators, scribes, dividers, squares, and rulers.
Sheet metal workers sometimes are asked to convert blueprints into shop drawings to be followed in the construction and assembly of sheet metal products. They also have to be able to fasten roof panel edges and machine-made molding to structures, nailing or welding pieces into position And finally, they sometimes have to fabricate or alter parts at construction sites, using shears, hammers, punches, and drills.
Like many other jobs, sheet metal workers must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Sheet Metal Worker Training
Montana State University-Billings-College of Technology - Billings, MT
Montana State University-Billings-College of Technology, 3803 Central Ave, Billings, MT 59102-9856. Montana State University-Billings-College of Technology is a small university located in Billings, Montana. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 1,157 students. Montana State University-Billings-College of Technology has a one to two year program in Sheet Metal Technology/Sheetworking which graduated four students in 2008.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Billings, Montana
Billings is situated in Yellowstone County, Montana. It has a population of over 103,994, which has grown by 15.7% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Billings, 88, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Billings are valued at $132,200 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, five hundred nineteen new homes were built in Billings, down from six hundred four the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Billings are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. The average commute to work is about 16 minutes. More than 28.5% of Billings residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.2%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Billings is 4.4%, which is less than Montana's average of 5.8%.
The percentage of Billings residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 48.6%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the LDS (Mormon) Church.
Billings is home to the Twin Pines Ranch and the Hilands Golf Club as well as Cobb Field and Pioneer Park. Visitors to Billings can choose from Western Executive Inn, Holiday Inn Express and Big 5 Motel for temporary stays in the area.