How to Select the Right Electrician Trade School near Greenville Alabama
The initial step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is finding an electrician trade school near Greenville AL. But with numerous technical schools to pick from, just how do you go about making sure that you enroll in the best one? Especially since there are so many points to consider. For instance, some potential students will start by searching for schools that are nearby their home. When they have identified a few that are within commuting distance, they will select the one with the most affordable tuition. Although location and cost are of importance, they are not the sole qualifications that must be evaluated. Also critical are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, as well as their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifiers should help mold your ultimate judgment when choosing an electrician school. We will address that checklist in more detail later in this article. But first, let’s review a little bit about being an electrician and the educational choices that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs
There are multiple options to get electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Greenville AL. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three alternatives. Often these programs are offered together with an apprenticeship program, which are required by the majority of states in order to become licensed or if you intend to become certified. Bellow are short explanations of the 3 most typical programs offered.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Alabama trade and technical schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are geared towards students who want to enter an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require two years to complete and are provided by Alabama community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier mentioned, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at some Alabama institutions, but are less preferred at four years than the other shorter programs. Most states mandate that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically four years be completed before licensing. Therefore, the majority of students are anxious to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Criteria
Electricians in Greenville AL can perform a wide range of services, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in most municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship differs by state, but normally around 4 to 5 years of experience is needed in order to take the licensing examination. The exams usually assess general knowledge and electrical theory, in addition to understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional method for an electrician to distinguish her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered vary by state and can be acquired in numerous specialties, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases includes 3 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) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician vocational school that you select not only delivers a strong academic foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might need to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Training Classes
A possibility that you might have contemplated is choosing an electrician online program to earn a certificate or degree. While online schools have become more accepted as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this instance they are not completely internet based. Pretty much all electrician training programs require partial attendance on-campus to receive hands-on practical training. But since the rest of the classes can be attended online, distance learning can be a more accommodating alternative for students that have limited time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online training programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional counterparts. Commuting expenses from Greenville AL are also minimized and a portion of the study materials can be accessed on line as well. Each of these advantages can make online electrician trade schools more economical and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will address in our due diligence checklist.
What to Ask Electrician Trade Schools
When you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to narrow down your school options. Since there are numerous electrician trade and vocational schools in the Greenville AL area, it’s essential to have a checklist of criteria that each program must satisfy. The initial 2 that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be a feature that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your decision, there are additional variables that need to be considered also. Following is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to analyze before enrolling in an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician technical schools have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Make sure that the Greenville AL program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, many states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A lower completion rate might indicate that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It could also mean that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which can produce 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 industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Greenville AL graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous electrician training programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with Greenville AL area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical technician you are working with regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Greenville AL electrical company if they can provide some pointers. Additionally keep in mind that unless you can move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Greenville residence. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Greenville AL, check that the programs you are considering provide those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select offers 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.
Night School Electrical Courses Greenville Alabama
Picking the right electrical training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new trade. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Night School Electrical Courses and wanting more information on the topic How To Become A Electrician. But as we have addressed in this article, there are many things that you will need to evaluate and compare between the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any electrical tech school that you are reviewing includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be smaller in size and every student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and conform with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the type of credential offered, so you will have to determine what length of program and certificate or degree will best fulfill your needs. Every training program provides different possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best way to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to attend some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you choose is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the final outcome will be a new career as a professional electrician in Greenville AL.
More Electric Locations in Alabama
Greenville is a city in Butler County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 8,135. The city is the county seat of Butler County and is known as the Camellia City. The movement to change the official Alabama state flower from the goldenrod to the camellia originated in Greenville with legislative sponsors LaMont Glass and H.B. Taylor.
Greenville was first settled in 1819. Its original name was Buttsville, but after becoming the county seat in 1822, its name was changed to Greenville, in remembrance of the former locale in South Carolina of many of the original settlers. The first county seat was at Fort Dale, a fortification that was named for Sam Dale, who fought to defend the area during the Creek War. The site of Fort Dale lies on the north of the city near the Fort Dale Cemetery, along what is now Alabama Highway 185.
The namesake of the county, Captain William Butler, was killed during the Creek War. He is buried in the Pioneer Cemetery, which is across from the oldest church in Butler County, the First United Methodist Church of Greenville.
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