By the numbers:





Median Pay


Estimated New Apprentices Needed Per Year

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Boilermakers power the things that power our lives. Every time you take a warm shower, switch on a light in your house, fill up your gas tank, enjoy warmth in the middle of winter, turn on the TV, or travel by train, plane, or automobile, you have a boilermaker to thank. 

Boilermakers are experts at welding, burning, rigging, and heavy fabrication. They use these skills to build large vessels such as towers, tanks, and boilers that create energy and store the liquids and gasses that power our world. They build the sources of power that fuel and sustain our lives, and play a pivotal role in the movement of our modern society. Any member of The International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron Ship Builders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers may call himself or herself a Boilermaker, and many do even though they do not actually work in boiler construction and repair. Many also refer to themselves by some other trade the Boilermakers union represents through its many divisions. So you may hear members refer to themselves as blacksmiths, forgers, ship builders, cement workers, stove workers, metal polishers, or numerous other job descriptions.

Day in and day out, boilermakers get to put their creativity, strength, and sharp analytical skills to work on job sites like nuclear power plants, power generation facilities, steel mills, refineries, chemical facilities, ship yards, hospitals, and schools. Boilermakers build the complex vessels and systems that keep our world running. While being a boilermaker requires extreme dedication and strength of body, heart, and mind, you’ll be hard pressed to find a tradesman who has more pride in their work and their abilities. 

How do you become a boilermaker?

Boilermakers learn the trade through a registered apprenticeship program run by the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers. Apprenticeships offer a superior education at little to no cost to the apprentice through on-the-job and technical training. You’ll receive a salary during your training and veterans may claim their GI Bill benefits during their apprenticeship. Once you complete an apprenticeship, you’ll become a Boilermaker journey worker, well on your way to a rewarding and fulfilling career.

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The building trades have some of the highest pay and job satisfaction ratings, and for good reason. It’s fulfilling and rewarding work – tangible work you do with your own hands – and it comes with amazing benefits, including competitive salaries, great work-life balance, rich health and wellness benefits, and more.