How to Become an Electrician in Oakwood Georgia
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Oakwood GA. But with numerous technical schools to choose from, just how do you tackle making certain that you enroll in the ideal one? Particularly because there are a number of points to consider. For instance, many prospective students will start by looking for schools that are close to their residence. After they have found some that are within commuting distance, they will decide on the one with the cheapest tuition. While cost and location are significant, they are not the only qualifications that must be examined. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifiers should influence your ultimate judgment when picking an electrician school. We will address that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But first, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the training options that are accessible.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Oakwood GA
There are several ways to receive electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Oakwood GA. You can select a diploma or certificate program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at a few schools, but are not as common as the first three options. Often these programs are made available combined with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states to be licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Bellow are brief summaries of the three most common programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Georgia vocational and trade schools and require approximately a year to complete. They furnish a good foundation and are aimed towards students who want to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take two years to complete and are provided by Georgia junior or community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more well-rounded education while providing the foundation that prepares students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are accessible at some Georgia institutions, but are less preferred at 4 years than the other briefer programs. The majority of states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases four years be carried out before licensing. For that reason, many students are eager to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not a component of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Criteria
Electricians in Oakwood GA can undertake a vast array of duties, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in most municipalities and states. The duration of apprenticeship varies by state, but usually about four to five years of experience is called for before taking the licensing exam. The exams typically assess electrical theory and general knowledge, in addition to knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary way for an electrician to identify her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be acquired in various specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification process in most cases includes 3 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 imperative that the electrician tech school that you select not only furnishes a strong educational foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any licensing and certification exams that you might be required to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Schools Online in Oakwood GA
An alternative that you may have considered is enrolling in an electrician online school to earn a certificate or degree. Although online schools are becoming more popular as a way of attending class without the need for travel, in this case they are not entirely internet based. Pretty much all electrician schools require some attendance on-campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the rest of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning might be a more convenient alternative for individuals that have minimal time for education. And as a bonus many online schools have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their on campus counterparts. Commuting expenses from Oakwood GA are also lessened and a portion of the study materials can be accessed online as well. All of these advantages can make online electrician trade schools more economical and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will cover in our due diligence checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
When you have made a decision to obtain a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to focus your school options. Because there are numerous electrician trade and vocational schools in the Oakwood GA area, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The first two that we discussed were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your determination, there are additional variables that must be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifications that you will need to research before choosing an electrical trade school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade programs have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Make certain that the Oakwood GA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you get a quality education, it can help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited schools. Additionally, some states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited for it to be approved 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 of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate might indicate that students were dissatisfied with the course and quit. It might also indicate that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s also 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 produce more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but also that it has the network of contacts to assist Oakwood GA students acquire apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician training programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical companies or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with Oakwood GA area electricians or electrical contractors. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the school facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Oakwood GA electrical contracting company if they can provide some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Oakwood residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Speak with several of the students and get their feedback relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with a few of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Oakwood GA, verify that the schools you are considering offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Oakwood GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Oakwood GA area.
Oakwood is a city in Hall County, Georgia, United States. It is part of the Gainesville, GA Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 3,970 at the 2010 census, up from 2,689 in 2000. Oakwood is home to the University of North Georgia Gainesville Campus and Wayne Farms.
Oakwood is located southwest of the center of Hall County at 34°13′52″N 83°52′57″W / 34.23111°N 83.88250°W / 34.23111; -83.88250 (34.230976, −83.882364). It is bordered to the northeast by the city of Gainesville, the county seat, and to the southwest by the city of Flowery Branch.
Oakwood was named after the railroad tracks that ran, and still are running as of 2008, through Oakwood and Gainesville. Because most of the cars contained wood (particularly high quality oak), it seemed reasonable to name the city after that type of lumber.
Enroll in the Right Electrical Vocational School near Oakwood GA
Picking the right electrician training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new profession. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to evaluate and compare between the schools you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any electrical training that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world frame of reference, and the training program should be current and conform with industry standards. Programs vary in duration and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to decide what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Every training program offers unique options for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the students and faculty. Invest some time to sit in on some 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 right training, hard work and commitment, the final outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Oakwood GA.
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