⚠ COVID-19 - Official Statement from AWS

Welding Workforce Grant

Welding Workforce Grant

The AWS Foundation is committed to securing the future of the welding industry by positively impacting welding education. The Welding Workforce Grant is the latest effort to ensure a skilled workforce is ready when industry calls.

Grants of up to $25,000 are available to improve and expand training programs and institutions to increase the number of welding graduates across the country.  

Please note that applicants must be both AWS Educational Institution Member and SENSE Registered to apply for the Welding Workforce Grant.

Schools must also be non-profit or government institutions.  Private schools are not eligible.

The Welding Workforce Grant Application is currently closed. Check back in February 2021 for the next application cycle.

What Assistance is Available?

Grants up to $25,000 are available for secondary and post-secondary education/training institutions to enhance and improve welding programs resulting in an increase in the number of welding graduates and/or the number of graduates successfully placed in welding or welding-related jobs. 

Funds may be used for:

  • welding or metalworking equipment purchases or upgrades
  • facility improvements
  • capital items 
  • computers, computer-based training systems

Funds cannot be used for:

  • any program or area not related to welding education/training
  • travel expenses
  • personnel or to expand teaching staff
  • student tuition or scholarships
  • textbooks or teaching materials
  • classroom or lab materials and/or supplies
  • personal protective equipment
  • indirect costs
  • no grants will be given to private schools or individuals

Who Can Apply?

  • Secondary schools (High School, Career Tech Center, Etc.) 

  • Post-secondary trade/technical programs or schools

  • Community colleges

  • Universities

As of June 3, 2019, for-profit institutions are not eligible to apply.

Funding Preferences

Preference will be given to:

  • Project proposals that result in a significant increase in the number of welding graduates and number of graduates successfully placed in welding or welding-related jobs. 

  • Commitments of matching support, including monetary support from the institution and/or an outside entity, as well as external in-kind support.

Welding Workforce Grant Application

The application consists of the following components:

  • Grant proposal summary

  • Details of matching support

  • Grant proposal description and outcomes

  • Data on number of welding students, graduates, and placement in welding jobs

  • One page itemized budget (Sample budget)

  • Letter of Commitment from Education/Training Institution

  • Instructor Statement (New requirement Fall 2020)

  • Letters of Support (preferred but not required) from advisory board members, local employers, community groups, local AWS section, etc. Letters from local businesses expressing an immediate need to hire graduates are preferred.

Deadline to apply is October 1st, 2020 

Selection Process

The applications will be reviewed by the AWS Foundation Grants Committee and recipients selected during meetings taking place in May and November.  The Grants Committee is comprised of members from the AWS Foundation Board of Trustees and the AWS Board of Directors.

Applicants will be notified of the status of their application in mid-June and mid-December.

Requirements if Selected for an AWS Foundation Grant

Measures of Success

AWS Foundation will audit the success of the project throughout the term of funding, at intervals determined by AWS Foundation.  A summary of progress-to-date with specific, detailed information will be required.  Projects will be measured against the original application submitted.  A final report including project summary, numbers of individuals educated/trained, numbers of graduates, numbers successfully employed in a welding job, results from the project, and a final, itemized budget, will be required.  

Release of Funds

A contract must be signed by both AWS Foundation and the grantee.  Funds will be distributed only to the education/training institution.  The release of funds will occur following submission of itemized invoices or quotes that meet the intent of the approved project. 

Reapplication Eligibility

A grant recipient may not apply again for three years following selection.

Previous Grant Recipients


For questions, or more information, please contact John Douglass at jdouglass@aws.org.

Hi there, we're here to help you.

  Monday through Friday
  • 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM (EST)
  • 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM (EST)

Contact Us

Become a Skilled Tradeperson

Popular Mechanics

The demand for most trades is strong and getting stronger. The U.S. Department of Labor forecasts healthy growth in the neighborhood of 8 to 9 percent over the next decade. Jobs associated with building and rebuilding roads, bridges, water, and the power grid are expected to grow by double-digit percentages–faster than the overall economy.

Read More >