How to Become an Electrician in Temple Hills Maryland
The first step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is finding an electrician trade school near Temple Hills MD. But with numerous vocational schools to choose from, just how do you approach making sure that you enroll in the best one? Particularly since there are so many factors to examine. For instance, some students will commence by searching for schools that are close to their residence. Once they have located a few that are within driving range, they will decide on the one with the cheapest tuition. Even though cost and location are of importance, they are not the only qualifications that should be considered. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifiers should influence your final decision when picking an electrician training school. We will cover that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the educational options that are accessible.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programs near Temple Hills MD
There are three general options to get electrician instruction in a vocational or trade school near Temple Hills MD. You can choose a certificate or diploma 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 in conjunction with an apprenticeship program, which are mandated by the majority of states to be licensed or if you wish to become certified. Bellow are brief summaries of the 3 most prevalent programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Maryland vocational and trade schools and take approximately a year to complete. They furnish a solid foundation and are aimed towards those who wish to enter an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require two years to finish and are provided by Maryland junior or community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at some Maryland colleges, but are less favored at four years than the other briefer programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and more typically four years be performed before licensing. Because of that, many students are anxious to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their academic program.
Electrician License and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Temple Hills MD can perform a vast array of services, such as installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly around 4 to 5 years of practical experience is required before taking the licensing exam. The exams typically assess general knowledge and electrical theory, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional means for an electrician to distinguish her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered vary by state and can be obtained in various specializations, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure usually involves three levels of proficiency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying agencies 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 provides a strong educational foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might need to pass in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Programs Online in Temple Hills MD
A possibility that you may have contemplated is enrolling in an online electrician school to earn a certificate or degree. Although online schools are becoming more accepted as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this case they are not entirely internet based. Pretty much all electrician training programs require partial attendance on-campus to receive hands-on practical training. But since the balance of the classes can be attended online, distance learning might be a more practical choice for individuals that have minimal time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online training programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on campus competitors. Driving costs from Temple Hills MD are also minimized and a portion of the study materials may be available online as well. All of these advantages can make electrician online tech schools more economical and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our questions to ask checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Trade Schools
Now that you have made a decision to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to narrow down your school options. Considering that there are numerous electrician vocational and trade schools in the Temple Hills MD area, it’s imperative to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must satisfy. The first two that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your determination, there are additional factors that need to be taken into account also. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to research prior to choosing an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician technical programs have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for example electrical technology. Make certain that the Temple Hills MD program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you get a quality education, it can help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, some states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited for it to qualify 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 complete the course. A low completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It may also mean that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which can mean 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 a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to assist Temple Hills MD students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician training programs are taught along 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 businesses or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have working partnerships with Temple Hills MD area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing practical training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical tech you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Temple Hills MD electrical company if they can give you some pointers. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are willing to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Temple Hills home. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there can be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between students and instructors. Speak with a few of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to some of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to attend classes at night or on weekends near Temple Hills MD, check that the schools you are comparing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Temple Hills MD?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Temple Hills MD area.
Temple Hills, Maryland
Temple Hills is a suburb of Washington, D.C., southeast of the downtown district. It is an unincorporated area and census-designated place (CDP) in Prince George's County, Maryland, United States. As of the 2010 census it had a population of 7,852.
The community was named after Dr. Edward Temple, who in the 1860s lived in a home beside Henson Creek known as Moor Park. Within the area are numerous garden apartments, duplexes, and single family communities constructed mostly from the 1950s through 1970s. The large community of Hillcrest Heights is nearby (and has a Temple Hills mailing address), with the 1960s 2-level Iverson Mall and Marlow Heights shopping centers.
Rosecroft Raceway (since 1949, harness horse racing) is nearby in Oxon Hill, although the racing audience has declined greatly. There are large public indoor and outdoor swimming pools operated by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, and also the private Temple Hills Swim Club. Students may attend either Potomac, Crossland, Friendly high schools. The area is especially convenient to the Capital Beltway (I-95/I-495), the Metrorail Green Line, Andrews Air Force Base, the U.S. Census Bureau, and Capitol Hill.
Choose the Ideal Electrician Trade School near Temple Hills MD
Selecting the best electrician trade school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to start your new trade. As we have discussed in this article, there are many factors that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a necessity that any electrician tech school that you are assessing includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and each student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world context, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Programs differ in length and the type of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Every program provides unique options for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal way to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you choose is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the end result will be a new career as a professional electrician in Temple Hills MD.
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