How to Find the Right Welding Certification Program near Dekalb Illinois
Choosing the ideal welder trade school near Dekalb IL is an essential first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are numerous schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have narrowed down your choices, how do you select the right one? Most prospective students start by checking out the schools that are nearest to their homes. Once they have found those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are important considerations when reviewing welding technical schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before starting your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s prudent to create a list of qualifications that your chosen school must have. But before we examine our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welding Degree and Certificate Training Courses
There are a number of options to get 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 offered in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief summaries of the most common welding programs available in the Dekalb IL.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally offered by technical and trade schools and take about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, fashioned largely to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for working welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more extensive education than the certificate or diploma while still supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
A number of municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of potential employment. If required, the welder school you select should prep you for any licensing examinations that you will have to pass in addition to supplying the appropriate training to become a qualified welder.
Welding Certification Options
There are several organizations that provide welder certifications, which test the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Many Dekalb IL employers not only expect a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a renowned agency such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered based on the kind of work that the welder does. Some of the things that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specific metal thicknesses
- Work with specific kinds of welds
- Perform in compliance with contract specifications
As earlier mentioned, many cities, states or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those calling for licensing, a number additionally require certification for various kinds of work. Certification is also a way to prove to employers that you are an extremely skilled and experienced welder. So just as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and verify that the welder technical school you choose preps you for certification as needed.
Points to Ask Welder Trade Programs
As soon as you have chosen the credential you would like to earn, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to evaluate schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of welder trade and vocational schools in the Dekalb IL area. That’s why it’s essential to decide up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have previously covered a couple of significant ones that most people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As mentioned, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the program you choose is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are more factors you may want to consider before selecting a welding vocational school.
Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder vocational school you decide on is accredited by either a regional or a national 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 offers, such as Welding Technology. So make sure 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). In addition to helping make sure that you receive an excellent education, the accreditation may also help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Dekalb IL for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or municipalities that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited also.
Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welding certificate or degree programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will assist in placing you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Ask if the schools you are looking at assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. The schools must have associations with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. More established schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and establish relationships within the Dekalb IL welding community.
Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that begin an academic program and complete 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 unhappy with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also a good indicator 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 additionally that it has the network of Dekalb IL contacts to assist students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.
Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. After you have limited your choice of welder programs to two or three possibilities, you should consider visiting the campuses to inspect their facilities. Verify that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be trained on are up-to-date. In particular, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be using in the field. If you are not sure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Dekalb IL welding professional if they can give you a few pointers.
School Location. Even though we already briefly discussed the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we need to cover. You should keep in mind that unless you are able to move, the welder program you pick must be within driving distance of your Dekalb IL home. If you do decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, apart from relocation expenses there might be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, most 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 ultimately will wish to work.
Smaller Classes. Personalized instruction is important for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not obtain much individualized instruction. Ask what the typical class size is for the welder programs you are reviewing. Inquire if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can experience just how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with several of the students and get their feedback. Also, chat with a few of the instructors and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.
Flexible Class Schedules. Some people learn a new profession while still employed at their present job. Make sure 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 Dekalb IL, make sure that the schools you are assessing offer those options. If you can only enroll part-time, make certain that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family circumstances.
Online Welding Classes
Welding is truly a hands-on kind of vocation, and consequently not very compatible with training online. Having said that, there are a small number of online welding classes offered by specific community colleges and technical schools in the greater Dekalb IL area that may be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily cover such subjects as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help give a beginner a basis to start their training and education. Nevertheless, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or work with welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be performed online. These skills have to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that desire to advance their expertise or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely careful and make sure that the bulk of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Attending a Welding School in Dekalb IL?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Dekalb Illinois area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
DeKalb /dɪˈkælb/ is a city in DeKalb County, Illinois, United States. The population was 43,862 according to the 2010 census, up from 39,018 at the 2000 census. The city is named after decorated Franconian-French war hero Johann de Kalb, who died during the American Revolutionary War.
DeKalb was originally called Huntley’s Grove, and under the latter name was platted in 1853. The name is for Baron Johann de Kalb, a major general in the American Revolutionary War. A post office has been in operation at DeKalb since 1849. The development of barbed wire is key in the history of DeKalb. Joseph Glidden, who developed barbed wire, was a historic citizen of DeKalb. Glidden would ultimately be known as the “Father of Barbed Wire”. Glidden began to mass produce his invention, and eventually sold half of the company to Isaac L. Ellwood. Together, the two formed the Barb Fence Company.
The city of DeKalb is in northern Illinois, United States, roughly 55 miles west of downtown Chicago and roughly 30 miles southeast of Rockford, IL. The Kishwaukee River flows northward through the city of DeKalb.
Choose the Right Welding Tech Program Dekalb IL
Selecting the ideal welding school will probably be the most important decision you will make to begin your new career. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Education For Welding. However, as we have addressed in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to examine and compare between the programs you are looking at. It’s a prerequisite that any welder training program that you are assessing includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student must have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom instruction needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Programs vary in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will need to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best satisfy your needs. Each training program provides unique possibilities for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Invest some time to attend a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you select is the right one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the final outcome will be a new career as a professional welder in Dekalb IL.
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