Can Women Become Good Welders?
Can Women Become Good Welders?
When it comes to welding, women are greatly disregarded and underrepresented. The welding industry has historically been a guys-only club. The only pause was during WWII when a lot of women were recruited to work in the construction industry to keep the economy going while men were away fighting in the war.
Today, one can hardly paint a picture of a girl holding a welder and electrodes in hand and fixing the ironwork on your car. You primarily picture a grizzled old guy wearing overalls covered in dirt and oil. Girls can be the same as well, well minus the dirt-grizzled part, I guess.
Many factors make women great welders as well as having many incentives for them to join the industry.
What Advantages Do Women Have When Welding?
An uninformed person would probably say that women don’t have a single advantage as opposed to men when it comes to welding. The truth is entirely the opposite as women can be quite handy with a welder, cutting with a plasma cutter, or any other tool found in a welder’s garage.
First of all, women’s hands don’t shake as much as men’s do. After various research, it was confirmed that men have a tendency to suffer from 10-Hz tremors 1.6 times more than women do. Having steady hands is particularly useful and needed when TIG welding.
Next comes the lower center of gravity. Women genetically have an 8% to 15% lower longitudinal center of gravity. This congenital ability allows them to balance their bodies in high above the ground. And as we all know, welding is not always done in convenient places. Sometimes you have to climb high up to do the job.
Finally, women don’t get injured as often as men do. Research has shown that men suffer many more injuries, particularly when welding. Women tend to take safety factors and rules much more seriously and as a result, don’t get injured so much.
What are the Incentives for Women Welders?
Becoming a welder comes with a lot of positive aspects for women. They don’t only get a sense of accomplishment by proving that they can do a difficult job, there are many other factors that convince them to become welders.
Traveling around the world and seeing new places is definitely one of them. As a professional welder, you might need to be deployed halfway across the world for a certain project. Seeing new things and experiencing new cultures is a definite draw for many girls.
However, the greatest aspect is a monetary one. Welding is considered one of the highest-paid trades in the world. Being that it requires a lot of skill and is a dangerous type of a job, salaries can be quite lucrative. For example, an Industrial Pipeline Welder can earn up to $58,000 a year.
What can we Expect in the Future for Women Welders?
Wheels are already in motion and the future for women welders is already looking bright. In the past couple of years, more than 1,200 women welders have joined the industry. This may not seem much, but the numbers were criminally lower before that.
Women still make up only 1% of the current welding workforce. But that number will drastically increase by the year 2024. It is predicted that in a span of only a few years, more than 400,000 experienced welders will retire. This is a massive opportunity for women welders as there is a shortage of experienced workers in the industry.
A picture of women holding a welder might soon become something that we are all going to get used to.