How to Become an Electrician in Smyrna Georgia
The first step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Smyrna GA. But with so many vocational schools to choose from, just how do you tackle making certain that you enroll in the best one? Especially because there are so many variables to evaluate. For example, some students will commence by looking for schools that are nearby their home. After they have located a few that are within driving distance, they will pick the one with the most affordable tuition. Although cost and location are significant, they are not the sole qualifications that must be evaluated. Also critical are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, in addition to their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifications should help mold your ultimate decision when choosing an electrician training school. We will discuss that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the instructional options that are accessible.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Smyrna GA
There are multiple options to receive electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Smyrna GA. You may enroll in a diploma or certificate program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at a few schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three alternatives. In many cases these programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship, which are mandated by most states to become licensed or if you would like to become certified. Following are short summaries of the three most typical programs offered.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually offered by Georgia technical and trade schools and require approximately a year to complete. They provide a good foundation and are aimed towards those who would like to get into an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve 2 years to complete and are offered by Georgia junior or community colleges, commonly as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while providing the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at some Georgia institutions, but are less preferred at four years than the other shorter programs. Most states mandate that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and in most cases 4 years be performed prior to licensing. Because of that, most students are anxious to commence their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician License and Certification Requirements
Electricians in Smyrna GA can perform a wide range of functions, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly about 4 to 5 years of experience is needed before taking the licensing exam. The exams commonly test electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary way for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be obtained in many specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails 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) as well as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician tech school that you choose not only delivers a strong academic foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Online Programs in Smyrna GA
An alternative that you may have looked at is selecting an electrician online program to earn a certificate or degree. While online schools are becoming more prevalent as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not totally 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 may be attended online, distance learning might be a more convenient alternative for individuals 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 Smyrna GA are also minimized and a portion of the study materials may be available online as well. All of these advantages can make online electrician trade schools more economical and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
Topics to Ask Electrician Vocational Schools
When you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to focus your school options. Since there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Smyrna GA region, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must satisfy. The initial 2 that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an degree online, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And while 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 qualifications that you will need to analyze before choosing an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. Many electrician vocational schools have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Make sure that the Smyrna GA program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you receive a superior education, it can help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Additionally, a number of states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited in order to be approved 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 percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the course. A lower completion rate might suggest that students were dissatisfied with the course and dropped out. It might also mean that the teachers were not qualified to instruct 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 can 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 an excellent reputation within the industry, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Smyrna GA students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many electrician trade programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating technical and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical contractors or trade unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with Smyrna GA area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed 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, check with the electrical technician you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Smyrna GA electrical company if they can give you some tips. Also keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Smyrna home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk to a few of the students and get their opinions concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Smyrna GA, verify that the programs you are reviewing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, find out 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 Smyrna GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Smyrna GA area.
Smyrna is a city in Cobb County, Georgia, United States. It is located northwest of Atlanta, and is in the inner ring of the Atlanta Metropolitan Area. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 51,271. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the population in 2013 to be 53,438. It is included in the Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell MSA, which is included in the Atlanta—Athens-Clarke—Sandy Springs CSA. Smyrna grew by 28% between the years 2000 and 2012. It is historically one of the fastest growing cities in the State of Georgia, and one of the most densely populated cities in the metro area.
Pioneers began settling the area in 1832. By the late 1830s, a religious encampment called Smyrna Camp Ground had become a popular travel destination and was well known throughout Georgia. It was named by Greeks for the Biblical city of Smyrna, modern day Izmir in Turkey, the home of the famous Christian martyr Polycarp. After the completion of the Western and Atlantic Railroad in 1842 the area began to grow. It was known by several names until 1872 – Varner's Station, Ruff's Siding, Neal Dow and Ruff's Station. The city was incorporated with the name Smyrna in 1872.
Two Civil War battles occurred in the area, the Battle of Smyrna Camp Ground and the Battle of Ruff's Mill, both on July 4, 1864. The area's businesses, homes and 1849 covered bridge (since rebuilt and still in use today) were burned by Sherman's troops.
Pick the Ideal Electrical Tech School near Smyrna GA
Selecting the right electrical trade school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are many factors that you will need to examine and compare among the training programs you are considering. It’s a necessity that any electrical training that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student should have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification as well. Probably The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and talk with the students and faculty. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you pick is the right one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the final result will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Smyrna GA.
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