How to Select the Right Electrician Trade School near Whitehall Pennsylvania
The initial step to becoming an electrical tradesman or contractor is locating an electrician trade school near Whitehall PA. But with numerous technical schools to pick from, just how do you undertake making sure that you enroll in the right one? Particularly since there are a number of points to examine. For instance, some potential students will start by looking for schools that are close to their residence. After they have located several that are within driving range, they will choose the one with the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are significant, they are not the only factors that need to be evaluated. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, along with their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifications should influence your ultimate decision when choosing an electrician school. We will address that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the training options that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs
There are multiple approaches to obtain electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Whitehall PA. You can enroll in a diploma or certificate program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at some schools, but are not as common as the first three options. Often these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship, which are mandated by most states to be licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Bellow are brief summaries of the three most prevalent programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Pennsylvania technical and trade schools and take approximately a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards individuals who would like to join an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs involve 2 years to complete and are provided by Pennsylvania community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while providing the foundation that prepares students to join their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degrees are accessible at certain Pennsylvania institutions, but are less preferred at 4 years than the other briefer programs. Many states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases four years be carried out prior to licensing. For that reason, the majority of students are eager to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician Licensing and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Whitehall PA can undertake a vast array of tasks, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in most municipalities and states. The duration of apprenticeship varies by state, but typically about 4 to 5 years of prior experience is required before taking the licensing examination. The exams usually evaluate general knowledge and electrical theory, in addition to understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional way for an electrician to identify him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and can be obtained in numerous specializations, such as 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 organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician vocational school that you pick not only delivers a solid academic foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any licensing and certification exams that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Online Programs
An alternative that you may have looked at is selecting an online electrician program to earn a degree or a certificate. While online schools are becoming more accepted as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician schools require some attendance on campus to obtain hands-on practical training. But since the balance of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning may be a more accommodating choice for individuals that have minimal time for schooling. And as an added benefit numerous online degree programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on campus competitors. Driving costs from Whitehall PA are also lessened and some of the study materials can be available on line also. Each of these benefits can make online electrician tech schools more economical and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our questions to ask checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
Now that you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to narrow down your training options. Considering that there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Whitehall PA region, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The initial two that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an online degree, then that needs to be an option that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be important when making your selection, there are other variables that need to be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess prior to selecting an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They may acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Make sure that the Whitehall PA program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you get a superior education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, a number of states require that the electrician training program be accredited in order to be approved 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 percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A low completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the course and dropped out. It might also mean that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of alumni, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist Whitehall PA grads obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician vocational programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical contractors or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with Whitehall PA area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical technician you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Whitehall PA electrical contracting company if they can provide some tips. Additionally bear in mind that unless you can move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Whitehall residence. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there can be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Speak with several of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with some of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes at night or on weekends near Whitehall PA, confirm that the programs you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Best School For Electrician Whitehall Pennsylvania
Choosing the right electrician training program will probably be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new profession. You originally came to this website due to an interest in Best School For Electrician and wanting more information on the topic College Courses For Electricians. But as we have addressed in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any electrician tech school that you are assessing includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should provide a real-world context, and the curriculum 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 determine what length of program and credential will best satisfy your needs. Every program provides unique possibilities for certification as well. Probably the best way to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you pick is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Whitehall PA.
More Electric Locations in Pennsylvania
Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania
Whitehall Township is a first class township with home rule status in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, in the United States. It is a suburb of Allentown, Pennsylvania, in the Lehigh Valley region of the state.
The Province of Pennsylvania was created in 1681 when King Charles II granted a tract of land in the New World to William Penn. After the death of William Penn, his sons, John, Thomas and Richard, became the owners of Pennsylvania. The Delaware Indians deeded that part of Lehigh County lying between the Lehigh (South) Mountain and the Blue Mountains to Penn’s sons in 1736.
A wave of immigrants from Germany’s Palatinate settled in Whitehall Township, the first being Jacob Kohler, who settled in the vicinity of Egypt about 1728. The settlers staked their claim on the lands by applying to the Penn's for a land warrant. They cleared the land for farming and established churches around which villages grew.
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