MEET THE PRO: Savannah Sisson, Welder

By Arkansas Next on Monday, October 25, 2021

Jason Masters

Hometown: Fordyce
Age: 25

Where I trained: Southern Arkansas University Tech’s Welding Academy of South Arkansas

What I earned: Technical certificate

Job title: Welder/maintenance
Employer: Brown & Root (Albemarle)

Savannah Sisson knew that she wanted to do something out of the ordinary in her future career, so she decided to attend Southern Arkansas University Tech’s welding academy in Camden. Being more of a hands-on person, she felt this was the perfect track for her future.

After earning her technical certificate, Savannah started working at Brown & Root (Albemarle) where she maintains and operates equipment, and fabricates new piping systems. Because she didn’t follow the traditional route of going to a four-year university after high school, Savannah says that she has been able to advance her career at a younger age than her peers and travel to meet others working in the same field as her. Savannah likes that her job brings her new challenges every day, and there’s always an opportunity to improve her skills.

"I didn’t want to follow the conventional path, and I wanted a trade that could be applied at work and at home. I'm a more hands-on person. I wanted to do something out of the norm." –Savannah

What does a WELDER do?

Welders permanently join metal parts by melting and fusing metal pieces. Welding is used in many manufacturing activities, such as the construction of buildings, fabricating new piping systems and automobile manufacturing.


  • Understand blueprints
  • Check equipment daily
  • Maintain a safe work environment
  • Communicate problems to appropriate supervisors

Education needed: On-the-job training; most states don’t require a license or certification

Jason Masters

Job Outlook

+13.3% expected growth in Arkansas by 2028

760 average annual job openings in Arkansas

6,630 jobs in Arkansas by 2028

This option is for you if

  • You have good hand-eye coordination
  • You follow directions well
  • You’re dependable and adaptable
  • You work well under pressure
  • You take pride in your work

High-end earners (top 10%) make

Median wages in Arkansas
$44,190 Annual
$21.25 Hourly

• Arkansas Elite Welding Academy
• Arkansas Northeastern College
• Arkansas State University–Beebe
• Arkansas State University–Mid-South
• Arkansas State University-Mountain Home
• Arkansas State University–Newport
• Arkansas State University- Three Rivers
• Arkansas Tech University-Ozark
• Black River Technical College
• East Arkansas Community College
• Lexicon Inc.
• National Park College
• North Arkansas College
• Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas
• Southern Arkansas University Tech
• Tyson Foods Inc.
• UAM College of Technology - McGehee
• University of Arkansas Community College at Batesville
• University of Arkansas Community College at Morrilton
• University of Arkansas Hope-Texarkana
• University of Arkansas-Pulaski Technical College

• Central Moloney Inc.
• Hytrol
• Koontz Electric
• Lexicon Inc.
• McGeorge Contracting Company
• Pace Industries
• Tyson Foods Inc.
• Welsco