How to Find the Right Welding Training Class near Page Arizona
Selecting the right welder technical school near Page AZ is an essential first step to launching your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to pick from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your choices, how do you pick the right one? A number of prospective students begin by reviewing the schools that are nearest to their homes. Once they have located those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the least costly one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary issues when evaluating welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s wise to develop a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we delve into our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welder Certificate and Degree Training
There are a number of alternatives available to get training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief summaries of the most typical welding programs available in the Page AZ.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are generally offered by trade and technical schools and require about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed largely to develop welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for working welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to finish and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still providing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
A number of municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of future employment. If needed, the welder school you select should ready you for any licensing exams that you will need to pass in addition to furnishing the suitable training to become a professional welder.
Welding Certification Alternatives
There are a number of institutions that provide welder certifications, which test the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Many Page AZ employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a highly regarded agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). Different certifications are offered dependent on the kind of work that the welder performs. Just some of the things that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specified metal thicknesses
- Work with various types of welds
- Perform based on contract specifications
As previously stated, various states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some additionally require certification for various kinds of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and qualified welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your local area and make sure that the welding technical school you choose preps you for certification if needed.
Questions to Ask Welder Tech Programs
Once you have decided on the credential you would like to obtain, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to compare schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are many welder trade and vocational schools in the Page AZ area. That’s why it’s important to determine up front what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have already discussed a couple of significant ones that most people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that should be considered. After all, the program you pick is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So following are some additional factors you might need to evaluate before selecting a welding trade school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welding technical school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are two standard types of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school offers, such as Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school alone. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, the accreditation may also help in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Page AZ for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.
Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welding diploma or degree programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Various other schools will assist in placing you in a job or an apprenticeship upon graduation. Find out if the schools you are looking at assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools must have associations with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. More established schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can help students find employment and develop relationships within the Page AZ welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that enroll in an educational program and finish it. It’s important that the welding school you select has a high completion rate. A reduced rate could signify that the students who joined the program were unhappy with the training, the teachers, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the caliber of training. A high job placement rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Page AZ contacts to help students obtain employment or apprenticeships upon graduation.
Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. After you have decreased your choice of welding programs to 2 or 3 possibilities, you should consider going to the campuses to inspect their facilities. Confirm that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are up-to-date. Specifically, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with in the field. If you are uncertain what to look for, and are already in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Page AZ welding professional if they can give you a few suggestions.
School Location. Although we previously briefly covered the importance of location, there are a few additional issues that we need to address. You should keep in mind that unless you are able to move, the welding program you select must be within commuting distance of your Page AZ home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, apart from moving expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welder diploma programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school offers a job placement or apprenticeship program, often their placements are within the school’s regional community. So the location of the school needs to be in a region or state where you ultimately will desire to work.
Smaller Classes. One-on-one instruction is important for a manual trade such as welding. It’s easy to get overlooked in bigger classes and not obtain much individualized training. Find out what the usual class size is for the welding programs you are considering. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can witness just how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with some of the students and get their opinions. Similarly, talk with a few of the teachers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.
Convenient Class Scheduling. Many people learn a new profession while still employed at their present job. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Page AZ, confirm that the schools you are looking at offer those alternatives. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify that the school you pick offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes if you you miss any because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Online Welding Training
Welding is very much a hands-on type of trade, and for that reason not very compatible with training online. However, there are a few online welding courses offered by certain community colleges and technical schools in the greater Page AZ area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes mainly cover such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to begin their training and education. Nevertheless, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be done online. These skills have to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for experienced welders that desire to advance their expertise or possibly earn a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very cautious and confirm that the bulk of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Attending a Welding School in Page AZ?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Page Arizona area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Unlike other cities in the area, Page was founded in 1957 as a housing community for workers and their families during the construction of nearby Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River. Its 17-square-mile (44 km2) site was obtained in a land exchange with the Navajo Nation. The city is perched atop Manson Mesa at an elevation of 4,300 feet (1,300 m) above sea level and 600 feet (180 m) above Lake Powell.
After the dam was completed in the 1960s, and was officially incorporated (March 1, 1975), the city grew steadily to today's population of over 7,000. Because of the new roads and bridge built for use during construction, it has become the gateway to the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and Lake Powell, attracting more than 3 million visitors per year. Page is also the home of two of the largest electrical generation units in the western United States. Glen Canyon Dam has a 1,288,000-kilowatt capacity when fully online. The other power plant to the southeast is the Navajo Generating Station, a coal-fired steam plant with an output capability of 2,250,000 kilowatts.
Page is located at 36°54′51″N 111°27′35″W / 36.91417°N 111.45972°W / 36.91417; -111.45972 (36.914296, -111.459717). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 16.6 square miles (43 km2), of which 16.6 square miles (43 km2) is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2), or 0.12%, is water.
Pick the Ideal Welding Trade Program Page AZ
Selecting the ideal welding school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to start your new career. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Best Colleges For Welding. However, as we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that you will need to evaluate and compare among the programs you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any welding school that you are considering includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student must have their personal welding machine to train with. Classroom instruction should provide a real-world frame of reference, and the course of study should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will have to decide what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each training program provides unique options for certification also. Perhaps The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the teachers and students. Invest some time to attend a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you decide on is the right one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the final outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Page AZ.