How to Pick the Right Welder Trade School near Syracuse Kansas
Selecting the right welding vocational school near Syracuse KS is an important first step to launching your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have fine tuned your choices, how do you select the right one? A number of people begin by looking at the schools that are nearest to their homes. When they have located those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are important concerns when evaluating welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before starting your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s prudent to develop a list of qualifications that your chosen 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 Courses
There are a number of options available to get training as a welder in a trade or vocational school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are short summaries of the most prevalent welding programs offered in the Syracuse KS.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally made available by trade and technical schools and require about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in scope, designed largely to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology furnishes 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. If needed, the welder school you pick should prepare you for any licensing examinations that you will have to pass in addition to furnishing the proper training to become a qualified welder.
Welding Certification Options
There are several organizations that offer welding certifications, which evaluate the skill level and knowledge of those applying. A large number of Syracuse KS employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a respected agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available based upon the kind of work that the welder performs. Just some of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specified metal thicknesses
- Work with various types of welds
- Work according to contract specifications
As already stated, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, many additionally require certification for different kinds of work. Certification is also a way to prove to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and qualified welder. So just as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and make sure that the welder tech school you decide on prepares you for certification if needed.
Points to Ask Welder Vocational Programs
When you have decided on the credential you want to earn, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can start to assess schools. As you can imagine, there are a large number of welding trade and vocational schools in the Syracuse KS area. That’s why it’s essential to determine up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have already discussed a couple of important ones that many people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are essential qualifiers, they are not the only ones that need to be considered. After all, the school you choose is going to furnish the education that will be the foundation of your new career as a welder. So following are some additional factors you might want to evaluate before selecting a welder technical school.
Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder technical school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are two basic kinds of accreditation. The school may earn Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school offers, such as Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you select is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping make sure that you receive a superior education, the accreditation can also help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Syracuse KS for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or municipalities that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited as well.
Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous welder degree or certificate programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Find out if the schools you are reviewing assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. These schools must have associations with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can rely upon for placements. These programs can help students find employment and establish associations within the Syracuse KS welding community.
Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that enroll in an instructional program and complete it. It’s essential that the welding school you select has a higher completion rate. A reduced rate could signify that the students who joined the program were dissatisfied 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 confirm that the program has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Syracuse KS contacts to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.
Up-to-date Facilities and Equipment. Once you have narrowed down your choice of welding schools to 2 or 3 options, you should consider visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Confirm that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be using on the job. If you are unsure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Syracuse KS welding contractor if they can give you a few tips.
School Location. Even though we previously briefly discussed the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we should deal with. You should bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the welder program you choose must be within commuting distance of your Syracuse KS home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides relocation 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 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 want to work.
Small Classes. Individualized training is important for a manual trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in bigger classes and not obtain much individualized instruction. Find out what the typical class size is for the welding programs you are considering. Ask if you can attend some classes so that you can see how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with some of the students and get their opinions. Similarly, chat with a few of the teachers and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they have earned.
Convenient Class Schedules. Many people learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Syracuse KS, verify that the schools you are looking at provide those options. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, confirm that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, check to see what the protocol is to make up classes if you you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Online Welder Degree and Certificate Programs
Welding is very much a hands-on kind of profession, and consequently not extremely suitable for training online. Even so, there are a small number of online welding courses offered by specific community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Syracuse KS area that can be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These classes primarily deal with such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to initiate 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. Naturally that can’t be done online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that want to advance their expertise or possibly attain a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely careful and make sure that the larger part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Attending a Welding School in Syracuse KS?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Syracuse Kansas area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Syracuse is located at 37°58′59″N 101°45′04″W / 37.982938°N 101.751224°W / 37.982938; -101.751224 (37.982938, -101.751224), along U.S. Route 50 and the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway, sixteen miles (twenty-six kilometers) from the Colorado border. The Arkansas River runs just south of the City of Syracuse. The countryside south of the Arkansas River is marked by sandhills. Located within these sandhills is the "Syracuse Sand Dunes," a city park covering 1,300 acres (5.3 km2), including a 40-acre (160,000 m2) fishing pond.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,812 people, 715 households, and 460 families residing in the city. The population density was 442.0 inhabitants per square mile (170.7/km2). There were 832 housing units at an average density of 202.9 per square mile (78.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 76.7% White, 0.2% African American, 1.8% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 19.4% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 32.7% of the population.
There were 715 households of which 37.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.7% were non-families. 31.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.23.
Select the Right Welding Vocational Program Syracuse KS
Selecting the right welding training program will probably be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new career. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in The Best Welding School. However, as we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that you will need to assess and compare among the programs you are reviewing. It’s a necessity that any welder school that you are considering includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom teaching needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be current and in-line with industry standards. Courses differ in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each training program offers different options for certification also. Probably The ideal way to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the teachers and students. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you pick is the best one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Syracuse KS.