Working in sheet metal may be the dream career you’ve been searching for. Take it from the professionals of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors' National Association (SMACNA) who put in the hard work, aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty and proudly put their creative minds to work while watching their projects come to life. To them, a sheet metal career means so much more than ‘just a job.’ From the HVAC systems that make the temperature in your homes comfortable; to safe healthcare, commercial and industry ventilation systems; to the striking exteriors of stadiums and office buildings, the finished products produced by career sheet metal workers make a difference in the daily lives of all Americans.
Whether you have a degree or are looking for on-the-job training, the sheet metal industry has plenty of opportunities to succeed. Here are the top five reasons to consider a life-long career in sheet metal:
1. Diverse Career Paths So You Can Build Your Own Career
The sheet metal industry provides unique opportunities to steer your own path and build a rewarding career. Whether you are interested in a skilled labor or management position, or you wish to pursue work across a specific sector (i.e. architectural, industrial, commercial or residential), sheet metal has something for everyone.
2. Building Skills Without Debt
You don’t need a traditional four-year degree and piles of debt to earn a great living. In the sheet metal industry, you can opt for apprenticeship programs that allow you to earn while you learn. Taking part in a training program means you can earn up to $250,000 in wages over the course of your apprenticeship training while also gaining valuable experience.
3. Essential Work that Meets Essential Needs
Essential work has a different meaning in the time of COVID-19, and many sheet metal workers have met the criteria of being essential across industries. Did you know that HVAC and air balancing professionals are responsible for air quality and safety of patients and healthcare providers at many hospitals and medical facilities? Or that sheet metal has been used to create portable sinks to allow safe handwashing and social distancing on job sites? Innovation is key.
4. Cool Projects That Challenge Your Creativity
Not only do sheet metal workers get to channel creativity into design, prefabrication and construction, they can be proud of and show off their work, too. Oftentimes, you’ll hear sheet metal workers say, “I built that!” with such joy. Example sheet metal projects include Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. and more.
5. One of the Fastest-Growing Industries
If you’re looking to join one of the fastest-growing industries, look no further than sheet metal. Employment of sheet metal workers is projected to grow 8 percent from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
At its core, sheet metal is a highly desirable trade playing a major role in the world around us through manufacturing and construction. What are you waiting for? Contact a local training center today.