How to Become an Electrician in Clarkston Georgia
The initial step to becoming an electrical tradesman or contractor is finding an electrician trade school near Clarkston GA. But with so many technical schools to select from, just how do you approach making certain that you enroll in the right one? Particularly since there are a number of factors to consider. For instance, some potential students will begin by looking for schools that are nearby their home. When they have found some that are within commuting range, they will decide on the one with the least expensive tuition. Although location and cost are of importance, they are not the only qualifications that need to be examined. Also critical are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, along with their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifiers should influence your ultimate judgment when picking an electrician school. We will discuss that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But first, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the educational options that are available.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Options near Clarkston GA
There are three general ways to receive electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Clarkston GA. You may enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three alternatives. Often these programs are made available combined with an apprenticeship program, which are required by most states in order to become licensed or if you want to become certified. Following are short descriptions of the 3 most typical programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually provided by Georgia technical and trade schools and require approximately a year to complete. They provide a good foundation and are geared towards individuals who would like to join an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs take two years to complete and are provided by Georgia community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while providing the foundation that readies students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are available at some Georgia institutions, but are less preferred at four years than the other shorter programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and more typically 4 years be carried out before licensing. Because of that, most students are anxious to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their academic program.
Electrician License and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Clarkston GA can undertake a multitude of duties, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The duration of apprenticeship differs by state, but typically about four to five years of experience is required before taking the licensing examination. The exams typically evaluate electrical theory and general knowledge, along with knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also a voluntary means for an electrician to differentiate her or himself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications offered vary by state and may be obtained in numerous specializations, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails three levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying agencies 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 enroll in not only provides a strong academic foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing exams that you may need to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Programs Online in Clarkston GA
An option that you may have considered is selecting an online electrician program to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online schools are becoming more accepted as a way of attending class without the need for travel, in this instance they are not totally internet based. Virtually all electrician training programs require some attendance on campus to receive hands-on practical training. But since the remainder of the classes can be attended online, internet learning might be a more accommodating alternative for students that have limited time for education. And as a bonus numerous online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their on campus counterparts. Travelling costs from Clarkston GA are also minimized and a portion of the study materials can be available online as well. All of these benefits can make online electrician trade schools more affordable and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Vocational Schools
Once you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to narrow down your training options. Considering that there are numerous electrician vocational and trade schools in the Clarkston GA area, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The first two that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that needs to be an option that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your determination, there are additional factors that must be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to analyze before selecting an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational schools have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Make sure that the Clarkston GA program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you acquire an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools. Additionally, many states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician schools you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate might signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It could also signify that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of alumni, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Clarkston GA grads secure apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician trade programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrician businesses or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have referring partnerships with Clarkston GA area electricians or electrical contractors. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing practical training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical specialist you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Clarkston GA electrical company if they can give you some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Clarkston home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to several of the students and get their comments concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to a few of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Clarkston GA, check that the programs you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Clarkston GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Clarkston GA area.
The city is noted for its ethnic diversity, and is often referred to as "the most diverse square mile in America" and "the Ellis Island of the South." In the 1990s refugee resettlement programs identified Clarkston as a good fit for displaced persons of many backgrounds. The rental market was open, residents were moving farther out from the Atlanta urban core, and Clarkston was the last stop on a transit line into the city. By the 2000s the local high school had students from more than 50 countries; a local mosque had 800 worshipers; and by some estimates, half the population was from outside the U.S.
A post office called Clarkston has been in operation since 1876. The Georgia General Assembly incorporated the place in 1882 as the "Town of Clarkston", with municipal corporate limits extending in a one-half mile radius from the Georgia Railroad depot. The community was named after W. W. Clark, a railroad official.
As of 2010 Clarkston had a population of 7,554. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 13.6% white (13.1% non-Hispanic white), 58.4% black or African American (57.9% non-Hispanic black), 0.2% Native American, 4.8% Vietnamese, 16.8% other Asian, 2.1% from some other race and 4.1% from two or more races. 2.8% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Choose the Ideal Electrical Trade School near Clarkston GA
Choosing the right electrician trade school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare among the training programs you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any electrical tech school that you are reviewing includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and each student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education should provide a real-world perspective, and the training program should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the type of credential offered, so you will need to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Each training program offers unique possibilities for certification as well. Probably The ideal way to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you decide on is the best one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the end outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Clarkston GA.
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