How to Become an Electrician in Lithia Springs Georgia
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is finding an electrician trade school near Lithia Springs GA. But with numerous vocational schools to choose from, just how do you approach making certain that you enroll in the best one? Particularly because there are a number of factors to evaluate. For example, some students will begin by searching for schools that are nearby their home. After they have identified some that are within driving range, they will decide on the one with the cheapest tuition. While location and cost are significant, they are not the sole things that should be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, as well as their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifications should contribute toward your final decision when choosing an electrician trade school. We will talk about that checklist in more detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the educational options that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Options near Lithia Springs GA
There are multiple ways to obtain electrician training in a technical or vocational school near Lithia Springs GA. You may choose a diploma or certificate program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at certain schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three options. Often these programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program, which are mandated by the majority of states in order to be licensed or if you wish to become certified. Bellow are brief summaries of the 3 most prevalent programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are generally offered by Georgia trade and technical schools and require about a year to complete. They provide a good foundation and are geared towards students who would like to get into an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve two years to complete and are provided by Georgia community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degree programs are available at some Georgia colleges, but are less popular at four years than the other shorter programs. Many states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases 4 years be completed prior to licensing. Therefore, many students are eager to begin their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Lithia Springs GA can perform a vast array of duties, such as testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The duration of apprenticeship varies by state, but typically about 4 to 5 years of prior experience is required before taking the licensing examination. The exams typically test electrical theory and general knowledge, along with understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional method for an electrician to identify her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered vary by state and can be earned in several specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases involves 3 levels of proficiency:
- 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 choose not only provides a solid educational foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you may be required to pass in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Online Schools in Lithia Springs GA
An alternative that you may have looked at is choosing an online electrician school to earn a degree or a certificate. While online schools have become more popular as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not completely internet based. Pretty much all electrician schools require some attendance on campus to receive practical hands-on training. But since the rest of the classes can be accessed online, internet learning can be a more practical choice for students that have limited time for schooling. And as an added benefit numerous online schools have a lower tuition cost compared to their on-campus counterparts. Driving expenses from Lithia Springs GA are also minimized and some of the study materials may be accessed online as well. All of these advantages can make online electrician vocational schools more economical and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
What to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
Now that you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to refine your school options. Since there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Lithia Springs GA region, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must satisfy. The initial two that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an online degree, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be important when making your decision, there are additional factors that must be taken into account also. Following is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to research prior to enrolling in an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Verify that the Lithia Springs GA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping make certain that you receive an excellent education, it can assist in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, some states require that the electrician training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate may suggest that students were dissatisfied with the course and quit. It could also mean that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which may mean 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 industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Lithia Springs GA students acquire apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous electrician technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have referring relationships with Lithia Springs GA area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical tech you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Lithia Springs GA electrical contractor if they can provide some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Lithia Springs home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Talk to some of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with a few of the teachers and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Lithia Springs GA, verify that the programs you are reviewing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, ask what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Lithia Springs GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Lithia Springs GA area.
Lithia Springs, Georgia
Lithia Springs is a census-designated place and unincorporated area, formerly incorporated as a city, located in northeastern Douglas County, Georgia, United States. As of the 2010 census, the community had a population of 15,491. The area is named for its historic "lithia" mineral water springs.
Incorporated in 1882, Lithia Springs was dissolved the first time in 1933. Lithia Springs became incorporated again in 1994, to be Douglas County's second completely internal municipality, but disincorporated again in 2001.
In 2001, the citizens voted (80% yea, 20% nay) on March 20 to dissolve the city charter and de-incorporate the city, transferring all assets to the county. The referendum that ended the town was part of the settlement in a lawsuit brought by city residents charging the city should be dissolved because it did not deliver enough services to justify its existence under state law. During its incorporation until 2001, the former city had five mayors.
Find the Ideal Electrical Trade School near Lithia Springs GA
Choosing the best electrician training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to launch your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to examine and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a must that any electrician training that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching needs to offer a real-world context, and the course of study should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in duration and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to determine what length of program and credential will best satisfy your needs. Every training program offers unique options for certification also. Probably the best approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Take the time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you decide on is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the end result will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Lithia Springs GA.
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