How to Enroll in the Best Electrician Trade School near Clanton Alabama
The first step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Clanton AL. But with numerous vocational schools to pick from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the best one? Especially because there are a number of points to examine. For example, some students will begin by looking for schools that are close to their home. After they have identified several that are within driving range, they will choose the one with the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are significant, they are not the sole things that need to be evaluated. Also critical are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, along with their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifiers should influence your final decision when picking an electrician training school. We will address that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the educational options that are offered.
Electrician Diploma, Certificate and Degree Programs
There are several options to get electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Clanton AL. You can choose a certificate or diploma program, or obtain an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three options. Often these programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states in order to become licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Following are short summaries of the three most typical programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Alabama vocational and trade schools and require about a year to finish. They furnish a solid foundation and are aimed towards students who want to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take 2 years to complete and are offered by Alabama community colleges, commonly as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more extensive education while providing the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are accessible at certain Alabama colleges, but are less popular at four years than the other shorter programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases four years be carried out before licensing. For that reason, most students are eager to commence their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their educational program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Criteria
Electricians in Clanton AL can undertake a multitude of duties, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in most municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but normally around 4 to 5 years of prior experience is called for before taking the licensing examination. The exams commonly test electrical theory and general knowledge, in addition to knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional way for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available vary by state and can be acquired in many specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually includes three levels of proficiency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying agencies include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) as well as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s important that the electrician tech school that you choose not only delivers a strong academic foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any licensing and certification exams that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Training Classes Online
A possibility that you might have looked at is enrolling in an online electrician school to earn a certificate or degree. Although online schools have become more accepted as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this case they are not entirely internet based. Just about all electrician training programs require partial attendance on campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes may be attended online, distance learning may be a more practical alternative for students that have minimal time for schooling. And as a bonus numerous online training programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on-campus counterparts. Driving expenses from Clanton AL are also minimized and a portion of the study materials may be available online as well. Each of these benefits can make electrician online tech schools more economical and accessible. And a number are fully accredited, which we will address in our due diligence checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Tech Schools
Once you have decided to obtain a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to focus your training options. Considering that there are numerous electrician vocational and trade schools in the Clanton AL area, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must meet. The first two that we discussed were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And even though all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your determination, there are other variables that must be considered as well. Following is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to research prior to enrolling in an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Verify that the Clanton AL program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you obtain a superior education, it can help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, a number of states mandate that the electrician training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate might signify that students were dissatisfied with the course and quit. It could also indicate that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which may mean more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Clanton AL students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous electrician vocational programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical contractors or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have working relationships with Clanton AL area electricians or electrical contractors. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical technician you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Clanton AL electrical contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Clanton residence. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to a few of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to some of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Clanton AL, confirm that the schools you are reviewing offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.
Electrician Training Schools Clanton Alabama
Selecting the ideal electrical training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new profession. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Electrician Training Schools and wanting more information on the topic Online Industrial Electrical Training. But as we have covered in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to evaluate and compare among the schools you are considering. It’s a must that any electrician tech school that you are assessing includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the type of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Invest some time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you pick is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the final result will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Clanton AL.
More Electric Locations in Alabama
Clanton is a city in Chilton County, Alabama, United States. It is part of the Birmingham–Hoover–Cullman Combined Statistical Area. At the 2010 census the population was 8,619. The city is the county seat of Chilton County. Clanton is near the site of the geographic center of the U.S state of Alabama.
The town was founded by Alfred Baker in 1868, when Chilton County was formed. Prior to establishment in 1868, the Town of Clanton was known as the community of "Goose Pond". Baker County was renamed to Chilton County and the community of "Goose Pond" became the Town of Clanton. Clanton was named in honor of General James H. Clanton, a brigadier in the Confederate States Army, and was incorporated on April 23, 1873. Baker was also elected first mayor of the town.
Nearby Lay Lake Dam and Mitchell Dam became Alabama Power's first two dams in the state, bringing economic improvements to the area. Immigrants played a part in starting the county's peach industry more than a century ago. Today, the peach industry is the number one industry in Chilton County, not only bringing fame to the county, but also millions of dollars to the local economy. The city of Clanton constructed a water tower in the form of a peach in 1993, becoming a landmark for travelers along Interstate 65.
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