How to Select the Right Welder Training Class near Tunnel Hill Georgia
Selecting the ideal welder technical school near Tunnel Hill GA is an essential first step to beginning your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to pick from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your choices, how do you pick the best one? Many prospective students start by looking at the schools that are closest to their residences. When they have located those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are necessary issues when reviewing welding trade schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s sensible to develop a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we examine our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welding Degree and Certificate Training
There are several options available to obtain training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can earn a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced degrees than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Below are brief summaries of the most prevalent welding programs available in the Tunnel Hill GA.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are generally offered by technical and trade schools and take about 1 year to finish. They are more hands-on training in scope, created largely to teach welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for working welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still furnishing the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
Some municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so make sure to find out for your location of potential employment. As required, the welding school you select should ready you for any licensing exams that you will need to take in addition to providing the suitable training to become a qualified welder.
Welder Certification Choices
There are various organizations that provide welder certifications, which test the skill level and knowledge of those applying. A large number of Tunnel Hill GA employers not only demand a certificate or degree from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a renowned organization such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered 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 certain metal thicknesses
- Work with certain types of welds
- Operate in compliance with contract specifications
As already stated, many cities, states or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those mandating licensing, some also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to employers that you are a highly skilled and experienced welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and make certain that the welding vocational school you choose prepares you for certification as needed.
Subjects to Ask Welding Technical Schools
When you have decided on the credential you would like to obtain, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are many welding trade and technical schools in the Tunnel Hill GA area. That’s why it’s important to establish in advance what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously covered 2 important ones that many people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As stated, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that should be considered. After all, the program you choose is going to provide the training that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So below are more factors you might want to consider before picking a welding trade school.
Accreditation. It’s essential that the welder trade school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national organization. There are two basic types of accreditation. The school may receive Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So verify that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you receive a superior education, the accreditation can also assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Tunnel Hill GA for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited as well.
Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. Many welding certificate or degree programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will assist in placing you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Find out if the schools you are considering assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools should have relationships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can rely upon for referrals. These programs can assist students in finding employment and establish relationships within the Tunnel Hill GA welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that start an educational program and finish it. It’s important that the welder program you pick has a higher completion rate. A lower rate may signify that the students who joined the program were dissatisfied with the training, the instructors, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also an indication of the quality of training. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Tunnel Hill GA contacts to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.
Up-to-date Facilities and Equipment. After you have limited your choice of welder programs to 2 or 3 possibilities, you should consider visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Make sure that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be trained on are up-to-date. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be using on the job. If you are not sure 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 Tunnel Hill GA welding professional if they can give you a few suggestions.
School Location. Even though we already briefly discussed the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we need to deal with. You should remember that unless you can move, the welder program you select needs to be within commuting distance of your Tunnel Hill GA home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, apart from moving costs there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welding diploma programs offered by community colleges. Furthermore, if the school offers a job placement or apprenticeship program, often their placements are within the school’s local 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 hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not get much one-on-one instruction. Ask what the average class size is for the welding schools you are looking at. Ask if you can sit in on some classes so that you can see just how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, talk with a few of the students and get their feedback. Also, talk with a couple of the teachers and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they have earned.
Convenient Class Scheduling. Lots of folks learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Check to see that the class schedules for the schools you are considering are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Tunnel Hill GA, make sure that the schools you are reviewing offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, confirm that the school you pick offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Online Welder Courses
Welding is truly a hands-on kind of vocation, and for that reason not extremely suitable for online training. Having said that, there are some online welding programs offered by various community colleges and technical schools in the greater Tunnel Hill GA area that can count toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily cover such subjects as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a foundation to begin their education and training. However, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials unless you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be accomplished online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for seasoned welders that would like to advance their expertise or possibly earn a more advanced degree. So if you should come across an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely cautious and confirm that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
Attending a Welding School in Tunnel Hill GA?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Tunnel Hill Georgia area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Tunnel Hill, Georgia
Tunnel Hill is a town in northwest Whitfield County and southern Catoosa County, Georgia, United States. It is part of the Dalton Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,209 at the 2000 census. The town is named for the Chetoogeta Mountain Tunnel, a 1,497-foot (456 m) railroad tunnel built in the late 1840s.
The community was first known as Doe Run. It was incorporated on March 4, 1848, as Tunnelsville, and changed its name in 1856 to Tunnel Hill. Both names refer to a nearby 1,497-foot (456 m) railroad tunnel through Chetoogeta Mountain, officially dedicated on October 31, 1849 by Etowah steel-maker Mark A. Cooper on behalf of the state-owned Western & Atlantic Railroad.
The railroad tunnel was the first to be completed south of the Mason–Dixon line. The rail line operated during the late 1840s with passengers and freight being portaged over the mountain while the tunnel was constructed. Another tunnel next to it, completed in 1928, is still used by CSX Transportation. The original Chetoogeta Mountain Tunnel is now paved for tourists to walk through; it has even more historic value, as the Great Locomotive Chase passed through it in 1862.
Pick the Right Welding Tech Program Tunnel Hill GA
Picking the ideal welding school will probably be the most important decision you will make to begin your new trade. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Welding Training Classes. However, as we have discussed in this article, there are many things that you will need to examine and compare between the programs you are considering. It’s a must that any welding school that you are assessing includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their personal welding machine to train with. Classroom education should provide a real-world context, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Each training program provides unique options for certification as well. Probably the best way to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you choose is the best one for you. With the proper training, effort and commitment, the final result will be a new career as a professional welder in Tunnel Hill GA.