How to Enroll In the Right Welding Training Class near Glendale Arizona
Selecting the ideal welding school near Glendale AZ is an essential first step to launching your new career as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to select from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have fine tuned your choices, how do you pick the best one? Many prospective students begin by checking out the schools that are nearest to their residences. When they have identified those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are crucial issues when evaluating welder vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before initiating your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s sensible to create a list of qualifications that your chosen school must have. But before we explore our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welder Degree and Certificate Training Courses
There are multiple options to get training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can obtain a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced courses than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Below are brief descriptions of the most prevalent welding programs available in the Glendale AZ.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually made available by trade and technical schools and take about a year to finish. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed primarily to teach welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
Many states and municipalities do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore be sure to check for your location of future employment. As needed, the welding school you choose should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will have to pass in addition to providing the suitable training to become a qualified welder.
Welder Certification Alternatives
There are multiple organizations that provide welding certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Numerous Glendale AZ employers not only demand a certificate or degree from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a renowned agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available based upon the type of work that the welder does. Just some of the skills that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specified metal thicknesses
- Work with certain types of welds
- Work in compliance with contract specifications
As previously mentioned, some states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some additionally require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a way to prove to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and qualified welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and confirm that the welding vocational school you select preps you for certification as needed.
What to Ask Welding Technical Programs
As soon as you have chosen the credential you would like to obtain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to compare schools. As you can imagine, there are many welder trade and technical schools in the Glendale AZ area. That’s why it’s important to establish up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have already covered 2 important ones that most people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifiers, they are not the only ones that need to be looked at. After all, the school you decide on is going to provide the training that will be the foundation of your new career as a welder. So below are some additional factors you may want to consider before choosing a welding vocational school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welding tech school you choose is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are 2 standard types of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a specific program the school has, such as Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you select is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, like the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping make sure that you receive a quality education, the accreditation might also assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in Glendale AZ for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited as well.
Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welder diploma or degree programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Ask if the schools you are looking at assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. These schools must have associations with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and develop associations within the Glendale AZ welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that start an instructional program and complete it. It’s essential that the welding program you pick has a high completion rate. A lower rate could signify that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the training, the teachers, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also an indication of the caliber of training. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the program has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Glendale AZ contacts to help students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.
Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have narrowed down your choice of welder programs to 2 or 3 options, you should think out going to the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Make sure that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be taught on are up-to-date. Specifically, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with on the job. If you are unsure what to look for, and are already in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Glendale AZ welding contractor if they can give you a few pointers.
School Location. Although we already briefly talked about the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we should cover. You should remember that unless you have the ability to relocate, the welder school you choose needs to be within driving distance of your Glendale AZ home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, apart from moving expenses there might be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welding degree programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school offers an apprenticeship or job placement program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in a region or state where you subsequently will desire to work.
Small Classes. Personalized training is important for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be lost in larger classes and not get much individualized training. Ask what the average class size is for the welding schools you are reviewing. Inquire if you can attend a couple of classes so that you can see just how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, speak with several of the students and get their feedback. Similarly, talk to a few of the trainers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.
Flexible Class Schedules. Some people learn a new trade while still working at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Glendale AZ, confirm that the schools you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you decide on offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes if you you miss any because of work, sickness or family emergencies.
Online Welder Training
Welding is truly a manual type of profession, and therefore not very suitable for training online. Having said that, there are some online welding programs offered by specific community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Glendale AZ area that can count toward a degree or certificate program. These classes mainly deal with such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to start their education and training. Nevertheless, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be done online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for experienced welders that desire to advance their expertise or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful and verify that the majority of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
Attending a Welding School in Glendale AZ?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Glendale Arizona area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Glendale /ˈɡlɛndeɪl/ is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located about nine miles (14 km) northwest from Downtown Phoenix. According to the 2017 U.S. Census estimates, the population of the city is 246,709.
In the late 1800s what is now known as Glendale, Arizona, was all desert. William John Murphy, a native of New Hartford, New York, who resided in the town of Flagstaff in what was then known as the territory of Arizona, was in charge of building a 40-mile-long (64 km) Arizona Canal from Granite Reef to New River for the Arizona Canal Company. In 1885, he completed the canal, which would bring water to the desert land. Murphy was deep in debt, since he had agreed to be paid in Arizona Canal Company stock and bonds and land instead of cash.
In 1887, Murphy formed the Arizona Improvement Company. His objective was to sell the land and water rights south of the canal. Murphy had to raise capital from out of state sources in order to meet payroll and construction expenses. Murphy decided to refer to this land as "Glendale". In order to develop and interest potential investors and settlers in this new town, Murphy decided to provide a better way of access from Phoenix to Glendale and ending in the town of Peoria by building an 18-mile-long (29 km) diagonal road which he named Grand Avenue.
Choose the Right Welding Vocational Program Glendale AZ
Selecting the best welding school will probably be the most important decision you will make to begin your new profession. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Welding Degree Programs. However, as we have covered in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to assess and compare between the programs you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any welding school that you are examining includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and every student should have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom instruction needs to offer a real-world context, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in length and the type of credential offered, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification also. Perhaps The ideal approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to attend some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you choose is the best one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the end outcome will be a new career as a professional welder in Glendale AZ.
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