How to Enroll in the Right Electrician Technical School near Nikiski Alaska
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Nikiski AK. But with numerous technical schools to select from, just how do you tackle making sure that you enroll in the best one? Particularly since there are so many variables to examine. For instance, some prospective students will begin by searching for schools that are nearby their residence. When they have found a few that are within commuting range, they will select the one with the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are important, they are not the only factors that should be examined. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, in addition to their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifiers should contribute toward your final decision when choosing an electrician training school. We will discuss that checklist in more detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the educational options that are accessible.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Options
There are multiple options to obtain electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Nikiski AK. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or obtain an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at certain schools, but are not as common as the first three alternatives. Often these programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship program, which are mandated by the majority of states in order to be licensed or if you want to become certified. Following are brief descriptions of the three most prevalent programs available.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Alaska vocational and trade schools and take approximately a year to complete. They furnish a solid foundation and are geared towards students who would like to enter an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees require two years to finish and are provided by Alaska community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more well-rounded education while providing the foundation that prepares students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier mentioned, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at certain Alaska institutions, but are less preferred at 4 years than the other briefer programs. Many states mandate that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically four years be carried out before licensing. Because of that, many students are anxious to commence their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their academic program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Criteria
Electricians in Nikiski AK can undertake a wide range of functions, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The duration of apprenticeship differs by state, but commonly around four to five years of experience is called for in order to take the licensing examination. The exams typically assess electrical theory and general knowledge, along with understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary method for an electrician to differentiate him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be earned in several specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure usually includes 3 levels of proficiency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) as well as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician trade school that you pick not only furnishes a strong educational foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any licensing and certification examinations that you may need to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Schools Online
An alternative that you may have contemplated is choosing an electrician online school to earn a certificate or degree. While online training programs are becoming more accepted as a way of attending class without the need for travel, in this instance they are not completely internet based. Virtually all electrician training programs require partial attendance on campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the remainder of the classes can be attended online, distance learning can be a more practical option for students that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus many online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional competitors. Driving costs from Nikiski AK are also lessened and some of the study materials can be available online as well. All of these advantages can make online electrician tech schools more economical and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will discuss in our due diligence checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
When you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to narrow down your school options. Since there are so many electrician tech and trade schools in the Nikiski AK area, it’s essential to have a checklist of criteria that each school must satisfy. The initial two that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that needs to be an option that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be critical when making your decision, there are other factors that must be considered as well. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess before choosing an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as electrical technology. Confirm that the Nikiski AK school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, some states mandate that the electrician training course be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate could signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It could also mean that the teachers were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of alumni, which may mean more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Nikiski AK graduates obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical businesses or labor unions. Check if the schools you are considering have referring relationships with Nikiski AK area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to form relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be instructed 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 specialist you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Nikiski AK electrical contractor if they can give you some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Nikiski home. Remember 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 personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Talk with some of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to a few of the instructors and learn what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Nikiski AK, verify that the schools you are reviewing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Learn Electrician Nikiski Alaska
Selecting the best electrical training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to launch your new trade. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Learn Electrician and wanting more information on the topic Train As Electrician. But as we have covered in this article, there are several things that you will need to evaluate and compare between the training programs you are reviewing. It’s a prerequisite that any electrician tech school that you are considering includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and every student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world context, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and degree or certificate will best serve your needs. Each training program provides different possibilities for certification also. Probably the best way to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect 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, effort and commitment, the end result will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Nikiski AK.
More Electric Locations in Alaska
Nikiski is located at 60°42′28″N 151°15′46″W / 60.70778°N 151.26278°W / 60.70778; -151.26278 (60.707891, -151.262646) on the west side of the Kenai Peninsula. It lies along the shore of Cook Inlet between Salamatof to the south and the Swanson River to the northeast. It is bordered across the Swanson River by the Point Possession CDP.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the Nikiski CDP has a total area of 75.9 square miles (196.7 km2), of which 69.4 square miles (179.8 km2) are land and 6.5 square miles (16.8 km2), or 8.57%, are water. The CDP is in a low-lying region covered by several lakes, including Stormy Lake, Suneva Lake, Daniels Lake, Timberlost Lake, Island Lake, Foreland Lake, Bernice Lake, and Cabin Lake.
Nikiski first appeared on the 1880 U.S. Census as the unincorporated Tinneh villages of "Kultuk" (AKA Nikishka No. 3) and "Titukilsk and Nikishka". Kultuk had a population of 17, and Titukilsk and Nikishka had a population of 57, all of whom were Tinneh Natives. There apparently were no census reports from 1880 until 1980, when the area was organized as "Nikishka" and made a census-designated place (CDP). The name was altered to "Nikiski" in 1990 and has reported as such on each successive census.