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Caterpillar’s Worker Hunt Means Welders Top Banking Pay

Spence Brennan makes $55,000 as an assistant manager of a Chinese restaurant chain. He is betting he can do better as a welder.

On an October morning at Mountain View College in Dallas, the 22-year-old sent sparks flying in a workshop as he practiced his electric-arc technique. The two-year school is a regular stop for manufacturers recruiting for skilled technical openings.