How to Become an Electrician in Newport Rhode Island
The initial step to learning to be an electrical tradesman or contractor is locating an electrician trade school near Newport RI. But with so many vocational schools to pick from, just how do you tackle making certain that you enroll in the best one? Especially because there are a number of points to evaluate. For example, some prospective students will begin by looking for schools that are nearby their home. When they have located a few that are within commuting distance, they will choose the one with the most affordable tuition. Even though location and cost are of importance, they are not the only qualifications that must be evaluated. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifiers should contribute toward your final judgment when selecting an electrician trade school. We will talk about that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the instructional choices that are accessible.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Options near Newport RI
There are several approaches to obtain electrician training in a trade or technical school near Newport RI. You can choose 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 options. In many cases these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program, which are mandated by most states in order to become licensed or if you wish to earn certification. Bellow are brief descriptions of the three most prevalent programs offered.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually offered by Rhode Island technical and trade schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are geared towards those who would like to get into an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve two years to finish and are provided by Rhode Island community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at some Rhode Island institutions, but are less favored 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 before licensing. Because of that, the majority of students are anxious to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not a component of their educational program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Requirements
Electricians in Newport RI can carry out a vast array of services, such as testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly about 4 to 5 years of experience is needed in order to take the licensing examination. The exams commonly assess general knowledge and electrical theory, as well as knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional means for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available vary by state and can be obtained in many specialties, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually entails 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) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician vocational school that you enroll in not only delivers a strong educational foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might need to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Schools in Newport RI
An option that you might have looked at is selecting an electrician online school to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online training programs are becoming 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 can be accessed online, distance learning might be a more practical choice for students that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus many online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional competitors. Commuting costs from Newport RI are also lessened and some of the study materials may be accessed online also. Each of these benefits can make online electrician tech schools more affordable and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Vocational Schools
Now that you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to refine your training options. Since there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Newport RI region, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each school must meet. The initial two that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that needs to be a feature that your chosen school offers. And even though all three qualifiers may be critical when making your determination, there are other variables that must be considered also. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess before selecting an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational schools have earned 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 example electrical technology. Confirm that the Newport RI program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you receive an excellent education, it can assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Additionally, some states require that the electrician training course 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 portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate might suggest that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It might also indicate that the teachers were not qualified 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 broader list of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize 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 field, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist Newport RI students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician vocational 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 contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have working relationships with Newport RI area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also furnishes employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure 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 in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical technician you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Newport RI electrical contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Also bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Newport home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to 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 monitor a couple of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to some of the students and get their feedback concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with some of the teachers and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Newport RI, confirm that the programs you are considering provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Newport RI?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Newport RI area.
Newport, Rhode Island
Newport is a seaside city on Aquidneck Island in Newport County, Rhode Island, United States. It is located approximately 37 miles (60 km) southeast of Providence, 21 miles (34 km) south of Fall River, and 74 miles (119 km) south of Boston. It is known as a New England summer resort and is famous for its historic mansions. It is also the home of Salve Regina University and Naval Station Newport, which houses the United States Naval War College, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, and an important United States Navy training center. It was a major 18th-century port city and also contains a high number of surviving buildings from the Colonial era of the United States.
The city is the county seat of Newport County, which has no governmental functions other than court administrative and sheriff corrections boundaries. It was known for being the location of the "Summer White Houses" during the administrations of Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy. The population was 24,027 as of 2013.
Newport was founded in 1639 on Aquidneck Island, which was called Rhode Island at the time. Its eight founders and first officers were Nicholas Easton, William Coddington, John Clarke, John Coggeshall, William Brenton, Jeremy Clark, Thomas Hazard, and Henry Bull. Many of these people had been part of the settlement at Portsmouth, along with Anne Hutchinson and her followers. They separated within a year of that settlement, however, and Coddington and others began the settlement of Newport on the southern side of the island.
Select the Ideal Electrician Vocational School near Newport RI
Choosing the best electrical trade school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new trade. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to examine and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a prerequisite that any electrical training that you are assessing includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should provide a real-world context, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Each program provides unique possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best way to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you decide on is the ideal one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Newport RI.
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