How to Become an Electrician in Mountain City Georgia
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is finding an electrician trade school near Mountain City GA. But with so many technical schools to pick from, just how do you go about making sure that you enroll in the best one? Especially since there are so many variables to evaluate. For example, some students will begin by searching for schools that are nearby their home. Once they have located a few that are within commuting range, they will decide on the one with the most affordable tuition. While location and cost are significant, they are not the only things that need to be considered. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, along with their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifications should contribute toward your ultimate judgment when choosing an electrician school. We will discuss that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But first, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the instructional options that are available.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programs near Mountain City GA
There are multiple approaches to obtain electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Mountain City GA. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three alternatives. In many cases these programs are made available together with an apprenticeship program, which are required by most states in order to become licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Following are short summaries of the three most prevalent programs available.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually provided by Georgia vocational and trade schools and require approximately a year to finish. They furnish a good foundation and are geared towards students who would like to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees require two years to complete and are provided by Georgia community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more well-rounded education while supplying the foundation that prepares students to join their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degree programs are available at some Georgia institutions, but are less popular at four years than the other shorter programs. Most states require that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically 4 years be carried out prior to licensing. Therefore, most students are anxious to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician Licensing and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Mountain City GA can perform a wide range of duties, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but typically about four to five years of practical experience is called for before taking the licensing examination. The exams typically test electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also a voluntary way for an electrician to differentiate him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications offered differ by state and may be acquired in various specialties, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure usually 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) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician tech school that you select not only furnishes a strong academic foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Online Training Classes in Mountain City GA
A possibility that you might have considered is enrolling in an online electrician program to earn a degree or a certificate. Although online schools are becoming more popular as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this situation they are not entirely internet based. Virtually all electrician training programs require some attendance on campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the balance of the classes can be accessed online, internet learning may be a more practical option for individuals that have minimal time for education. And as an added benefit numerous online training programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on-campus alternatives. Commuting expenses from Mountain City GA are also minimized and some of the study materials can be accessed online also. All of these advantages can make online electrician tech schools more affordable and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will address in our due diligence checklist.
Topics to Ask Electrician Trade Schools
Now that you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to narrow down your training options. Since there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Mountain City GA area, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each program must satisfy. The initial 2 that we discussed were location and tuition expense. If you have an interest in earning an online degree, then that must be a feature that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your determination, there are additional variables that need to be taken into account as well. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifications that you will need to analyze prior to selecting an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade programs have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Make sure that the Mountain City GA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping make certain that you receive a superior education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, a number of states require that the electrician training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate may suggest that students were disappointed with the program and dropped out. It may also mean that the teachers 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 broader list of alumni, which may result in more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Mountain City GA students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician technical programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrician companies or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with Mountain City GA area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical tech you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Mountain City GA electrical contractor if they can provide some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you can move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Mountain City home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to some of the students and get their feedback relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to some of the instructors and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Mountain City GA, check that the schools you are comparing offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Mountain City GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Mountain City GA area.
Mountain City, Georgia
Mountain City is an incorporated town in Rabun County, Georgia, United States. The population was 829 at the 2000 census. The town straddles the Eastern Continental Divide in a deep gap in the Blue Ridge Mountain front. The gap allows U.S. Route 441 to cross the range at an elevation of 2168 feet without the significant grade required by roadways at most other mountain passes along the Georgia Blue Ridge.
Mountain City is also home to a sleep away camp, Camp Blue Ridge. Camp Blue Ridge is an activity oriented camp for adolescents, located in the Blue Ridge mountains. Campers attend Camp Blue Ridge during the summer months of June–August, and come from populated southern states, such as Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia, but there have been a lot of campers from far away places, and various other countries. Camp Blue Ridge also operates as a retreat and special events venue site. They host school and corporate groups, churches and temples, special interest groups and they are the Georgia home of one of the biggest mud obstacle adventure races - Warrior Dash. Camp Blue Ridge has the ability to host both large and intimate music festivals.
As of the census of 2000, there were 829 people, 363 households, and 238 families residing in the town. The population density was 464.1 people per square mile (178.8/km²). There were 462 housing units at an average density of 258.6 per square mile (99.7/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 90.83% White, 0.60% African American, 0.97% Native American, 0.12% Asian, 4.46% from other races, and 3.02% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 7.60% of the population.
Pick the Right Electrician Tech School near Mountain City GA
Choosing the right electrician trade school will probably be the most important decision you will make to start 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 lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and each student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world frame of reference, and the course of study should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best satisfy your needs. Each training program offers unique possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best means to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you pick is the best one for you. With the right training, effort and commitment, the final outcome will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Mountain City GA.
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