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Career and Education Opportunities for Structural and Ornamental Metalwork Metal Fabricators in Charleston, West Virginia

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators in the Charleston, West Virginia area. There are currently 490 working structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators in West Virginia; this should shrink 3% to about 480 working structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 0.4% over the next eight years. In general, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators fabricate, lay out, and fit parts of structural metal products.

A person working as a structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricator can expect to earn about $14 per hour or $29,670 annually on average in West Virginia and about $15 per hour or $32,400 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators are better than earnings in the general category of Assembling and Fabrication in West Virginia and better than general Assembling and Fabrication category earnings nationally.

There are seventeen schools of higher education in the Charleston area, including one within twenty-five miles of Charleston where you can get a degree to start your career as a structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricator. The most common level of education for structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Structural and Ornamental Metalwork Metal Fabricator

Structural and Ornamental Metalwork Metal Fabricator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators fabricate, lay out, and fit parts of structural metal products.

Structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators position and weld components to fashion complete units or subunits, following blueprints and layout specifications, and using jigs, welding torches, and hand tools. They also move components into position, manually or with hoists or cranes. Equally important, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators have to lay out and examine metal stock or workpieces to be processed to insure that specifications are met. They are often called upon to verify conformance of workpieces to given requirements, using squares, rulers, and measuring tapes. They are expected to tack-weld fitted components together. Finally, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators smooth workpiece edges and fix taps, tubes, and valves.

Every day, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators 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 maintain precise control of objects and devices through a range of movements.

It is important for structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators to straighten warped or bent components, using sledges or bulldozers. They are often called upon to direct welders to build up low spots or short pieces with weld. They also align and fit components according to given requirements, using jacks, turnbuckles, wedges, drift pins, pry bars, and hammers. They are sometimes expected to layout and construct templates and fixtures, using hand tools. Somewhat less frequently, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators are also expected to heat-treat components, using acetylene torches.

Structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators sometimes are asked to hammer and grind workpieces to cut and straighten metal. And finally, they sometimes have to verify conformance of workpieces to given requirements, using squares, rulers, and measuring tapes.

Like many other jobs, structural and ornamental metalwork metal fabricators must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Charleston 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.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Structural and Ornamental Metalwork Metal Fabricator Training

Ben Franklin Career Center - Dunbar, WV

Ben Franklin Career Center, 500 28th St, Dunbar, WV 25064. Ben Franklin Career Center is a small school located in Dunbar, West Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 390 students. Ben Franklin Career Center has a one to two year program in Machine Shop Technology/Assistant which graduated one student in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Charleston, West Virginia

Charleston, West Virginia
Charleston, West Virginia photo by Malepheasant

Charleston is situated in Kanawha County, West Virginia. It has a population of over 50,302, which has shrunk by 5.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Charleston, 84, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Charleston are priced at $268,400 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, thirty-four new homes were constructed in Charleston, up from twenty-seven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Charleston are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, health care, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 16 minutes. More than 32.6% of Charleston residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 15.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Charleston is 7.7%, which is the same as West Virginia's average of 7.7%. About 16.7% of Charleston's residents are below the poverty line, which is better than the state average.

The percentage of Charleston residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 34.5%, is less than both the national and state average. Starcher Baptist Church, Southeast Church of the Nazarene and South Ruffner Presbyterian Church are among the churches located in Charleston. The largest religious groups are the American Baptist Churches in the USA, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.

Charleston is home to the John F Kennedy Center and the Kanawha County Courthouse as well as Watt Powell Stadium and Ruffner Memorial Park. Shopping centers in the area include Patrick Street Plaza Shopping Center, Laidley Court Shopping Center and Plaza East Shopping Center. Visitors to Charleston can choose from Days Inn Charleston East WV, Motel 6 and Fairfield Inn Charleston for temporary stays in the area.