16 years ago
And more recently I took some welding at the local community college. This time it cost money, but senior citizens can take classes on a space available basis for something like $30, which is cheaper than paying for the consumables as gas and electrodes. The class was 3 hours a night and I think two nights a week. Again one instructor and maybe 40 students. Mostly oxy/acet and stick, but I and a couple of other students took TIG. No one was doing any MIG welding, although they did have some machines. I tried one out setting it up from the instructions right on the machine. If you have done other types of welding, you can figure it out on your own. Even less instruction as more students, but still enough. Mostly welding is practice with someone to point out what you are doing wrong and suggesting things to try.
So in your case, I would skip the school. If you could find someone that would let you pay them some beer money to spend an hour with you, I would do that.