How to Become an Electrician in Lincoln Alabama
The first step to learning to be an electrical tradesman or contractor is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Lincoln AL. But with numerous technical schools to pick from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the best one? Especially since there are a number of points to consider. For example, some potential students will begin by looking for schools that are close to their home. Once they have located some that are within commuting distance, they will decide on the one with the cheapest tuition. Even though cost and location are important, they are not the sole things that should be considered. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifications should help mold your final decision when choosing an electrician training school. We will talk about that checklist in more detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about being an electrician and the educational choices that are available.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Options near Lincoln AL
There are several ways to obtain electrician instruction in a trade or technical school near Lincoln AL. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at certain schools, but are not as common as the first three options. Often these programs are offered together with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states to be licensed or if you want to earn certification. Bellow are brief summaries of the three most prevalent programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Alabama technical and trade schools and take approximately a year to complete. They furnish a good foundation and are aimed towards those who wish to join an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs take 2 years to complete and are offered by Alabama community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to begin their apprenticeship program.
As previously stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at some Alabama institutions, but are less popular at 4 years than the other briefer programs. Most states mandate that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically four years be carried out before licensing. Therefore, most students are anxious to commence their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Guidelines
Electricians in Lincoln AL can perform a multitude of functions, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship differs by state, but usually around 4 to 5 years of practical experience is needed in order to take the licensing exam. The exams typically evaluate general knowledge and electrical theory, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary way for an electrician to differentiate her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered differ by state and can be earned in numerous specialties, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails 3 levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician vocational school that you pick not only provides a strong academic foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any certification and licensing exams that you might be required to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Programs Online in Lincoln AL
A possibility that you may have considered is enrolling in an electrician online program to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online training programs are becoming more popular as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not entirely internet based. Just about all electrician schools require partial attendance on campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the rest of the classes can be attended online, distance learning may be a more convenient choice for individuals that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus many online schools have a lower tuition cost compared to their on campus counterparts. Commuting costs from Lincoln AL are also minimized and a portion of the study materials may be available on line also. All of these advantages can make online electrician vocational schools more affordable and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will cover in our due diligence checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
Once you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to refine your school options. Considering that there are so many electrician trade and vocational schools in the Lincoln AL area, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must satisfy. The first 2 that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that must be a feature that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be important when making your decision, there are other variables that must be considered also. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifications that you will need to assess before enrolling in an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational schools have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for example electrical technology. Make certain that the Lincoln AL program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you get a superior education, it may help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, some states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It might also mean that the instructors were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s similarly essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist Lincoln AL students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous electrician vocational programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrician companies or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with Lincoln AL area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to form relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical technician you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Lincoln AL electrical contractor if they can provide some suggestions. Also bear in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Lincoln home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there can be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to some of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to a few of the teachers and find out what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Lincoln AL, confirm that the schools you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Additionally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Lincoln AL?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Lincoln AL area.
Albert Lincoln Roker Jr. (born August 20, 1954) is an American weather forecaster, journalist, television personality, actor, and author. He is the current weather anchor on NBC's Today. Roker also appears occasionally as a co-anchor on NBC Nightly News. He has an inactive American Meteorological Society Television Seal #238.
On November 12, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Roker attempted to beat the unofficial world record for an uninterrupted live weather report of 33 hours held by Norwegian weather broadcaster Eli Kari Gjengedal. On November 14, 2014, at 8:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, Roker set the Guinness World Record by reporting for 34 hours.
Al Roker was born in Queens, New York, the son of Isabel, of Jamaican descent, and Albert Lincoln Roker Sr., a bus driver of Bahamian descent. Roker initially wanted to be a cartoonist. He was raised Catholic (in the faith of his mother) and graduated from Xavier High School in Manhattan. He worked on several projects as a member of the school's Cartooning & Illustration Club. He attended the State University of New York at Oswego where he received a B.A. in communications in 1976.
Select the Ideal Electrical Technical School near Lincoln AL
Selecting the best electrician training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that you will need to examine and compare among the training programs you are looking at. It’s a must that any electrical training program that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should provide a real-world frame of reference, and the training program should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Programs vary in duration and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each program provides unique possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best approach to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you choose is the best one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the final result will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Lincoln AL.
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