How to Become an Electrician in Thomasville Georgia
The first step to learning to be an electrical tradesman or contractor is locating an electrician trade school near Thomasville GA. But with so many technical schools to choose from, just how do you approach making sure that you enroll in the best one? Particularly because there are a number of variables to consider. For instance, many students will start by looking for schools that are nearby their residence. When they have found some that are within commuting distance, they will choose the one with the least expensive tuition. Even though cost and location are significant, they are not the only things that need to be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, in addition to their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifications should contribute toward your final judgment when picking an electrician training school. We will address that checklist in more detail later in this article. But first, let’s review a little bit about being an electrician and the training choices that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Options near Thomasville GA
There are three general options to obtain electrician training in a technical or vocational school near Thomasville GA. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three options. Frequently these programs are offered together with an apprenticeship, which are mandated by the majority of states in order to be licensed or if you wish to earn certification. Bellow are short explanations of the 3 most typical programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally offered by Georgia vocational and trade schools and require approximately a year to finish. They provide a good foundation and are geared towards students who wish to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve two years to complete and are offered by Georgia community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to begin their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain Georgia institutions, but are less favored at four years than the other briefer programs. Most states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and more typically 4 years be performed before licensing. Therefore, most students are anxious to begin their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Requirements
Electricians in Thomasville GA can carry out a wide range of services, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to be licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The duration of apprenticeship differs by state, but normally around four to five years of experience is needed in order to take the licensing examination. The exams typically assess electrical theory and general knowledge, in addition to understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional way for an electrician to identify her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be obtained in several specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process in most cases involves three 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 crucial that the electrician trade school that you select not only delivers a strong educational foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any certification and licensing exams that you might be required to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Training Classes in Thomasville GA
A possibility that you might have looked at is enrolling in an electrician online program to earn a degree or a certificate. While online schools have become more prevalent as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this situation they are not totally internet based. Virtually all electrician schools require partial attendance on-campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the remainder of the classes may be attended online, distance learning can be a more convenient choice for individuals that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus many online schools have a lower tuition cost compared to their traditional competitors. Travelling expenses from Thomasville GA are also reduced and a portion of the study materials may be available on line as well. All of these advantages can make electrician online vocational schools more affordable and accessible. And a number are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our questions to ask checklist.
Topics to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
When you have decided to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to refine your training options. Considering that there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Thomasville GA area, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each program must meet. The first 2 that we discussed were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an degree online, then that must be an option that your final school offers. And even though all three qualifiers may be important when making your decision, there are other variables that need to be considered as well. Below is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to research prior to selecting an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician technical programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Confirm that the Thomasville GA program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire a quality education, it can assist in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, a number of states require that the electrician training program be accredited in order to be approved 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 or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It might also suggest that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Thomasville GA grads secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many electrician trade programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical companies or labor unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with Thomasville GA area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus facilities and the equipment 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, talk to the electrical technician you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Thomasville GA electrical contractor if they can provide some suggestions. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Thomasville residence. Take note 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 important that you receive as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to some of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, speak to some of the teachers 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 schools you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes at night or on weekends near Thomasville GA, check that the programs you are considering provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Thomasville GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Thomasville GA area.
The city deems itself the City of Roses and holds an annual Rose Festival. The city features plantations open to the public, a historic downtown, a large farmer's market, and a 308-year-old oak tree at the corner of Monroe and Crawford streets. The population was 19,340 at the 2013 United States Census.
In 2016, Thomasville was featured as the second best historic small town on USA Today's 10 Best List Reader's Choice after Bisbee (Arizona) but ahead of Abingdon (Virginia), Mackinac Island (Michigan), and Astoria (Oregon).
Thomasville was founded in 1825 as seat of the newly formed Thomas County. It was incorporated as a town in 1831 and as a city in 1889. The community was named for Jett Thomas, a general in the War of 1812.
Select the Right Electrician Technical School near Thomasville GA
Choosing the best electrical training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new trade. As we have covered in this article, there are several things that you will need to evaluate and compare among the training programs you are considering. It’s a must that any electrical training that you are reviewing includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education should offer a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to determine what length of program and credential will best satisfy your needs. Each program provides different options for certification also. Probably the best way to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you choose is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Thomasville GA.
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