How to Become an Electrician in Kingston Washington
The initial step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Kingston WA. But with numerous vocational schools to pick from, just how do you tackle making sure that you enroll in the right one? Especially since there are a number of variables to consider. For example, many students will start by looking for schools that are nearby their residence. When they have located several that are within commuting range, they will choose the one with the least expensive tuition. While cost and location are of importance, they are not the only qualifications that should be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, in addition to their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifications should help mold your ultimate judgment when picking an electrician training school. We will talk about that checklist in more detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the training options that are accessible.
Electrician Diploma, Certificate and Degree Options near Kingston WA
There are several options to obtain electrician training in a trade or technical school near Kingston WA. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered 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, which are mandated by most states to become licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Bellow are brief explanations of the 3 most prevalent programs available.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Washington vocational and trade schools and take approximately a year to complete. They provide a good foundation and are geared towards individuals who want to enter an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs take 2 years to finish and are offered by Washington community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more comprehensive education while providing the foundation that readies students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As previously stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at some Washington institutions, but are less favored at four years than the other briefer programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and in most cases 4 years be performed before licensing. Therefore, many students are anxious to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician Licensing and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Kingston WA can perform a wide range of duties, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly about four to five years of experience is needed in order to take the licensing exam. The exams usually evaluate electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional method for an electrician to identify him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered vary by state and can be obtained in many specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually includes 3 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) as well as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician trade school that you choose not only delivers a strong academic foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any licensing and certification examinations that you might be required to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Schools Online in Kingston WA
An option that you might have considered is enrolling in an electrician online school to earn a degree or a certificate. Even though online training programs have become more prevalent as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not entirely internet based. Just about all electrician training programs require partial attendance on-campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the remainder of the classes may be accessed online, distance learning can be a more convenient alternative for students that have minimal time for schooling. And as a bonus many online training programs have a lower tuition cost compared to their on campus competitors. Driving costs from Kingston WA are also lessened and a portion of the study materials can be available on line also. Each of these benefits can make online electrician vocational schools more affordable and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will address in our questions to ask checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Vocational Schools
Now that you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to refine your training options. Considering that there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Kingston WA area, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each school must meet. The first two that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be a feature that your final school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be important when making your decision, there are other factors that need to be taken into account also. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifications that you will need to research before choosing an electrical trade school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician vocational schools have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Make sure that the Kingston WA school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire an excellent education, it can assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Additionally, a number of states require that the electrician training course be accredited for it to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the course and dropped out. It might also suggest that the instructors were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s also essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which may result in more contacts for the school to employ 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 trade, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Kingston WA grads acquire apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many electrician training programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and technical programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrician contractors or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with Kingston WA area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the campus facilities and the tools 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, check with the electrical specialist you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Kingston WA electrical contractor if they can provide some tips. Also bear in mind that unless you can move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Kingston residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there may be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to some of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to some of the instructors and learn what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Kingston WA, check that the programs you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Kingston WA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Kingston WA area.
Kingston (formerly Appletree Cove) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Kitsap County, Washington, United States. The population was 2,099 at the 2010 census. Kingston is along the shores of Appletree Cove and the Puget Sound, and is home to a major Washington State Ferry terminal linking it to Edmonds.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.4 square miles (6.3 km²), of which, 1.6 square miles (4.3 km²) of it is land and 0.8 square miles (2.0 km²) of it (32.10%) is water.
Founded in 1853 by Benjamin Bannister the community was originally known as Appletree Cove, By 1880 it was a lumber town until the mill closed down in the early 20th century. But the local lumber yard is still in business today, owned by Tom Waggoner. Known as the "Little city by the sea", Kingston is the northern gateway to the Olympic Peninsula. Now it is the social and economic center of the north end of the Kitsap Peninsula.
Select the Right Electrical Technical School near Kingston WA
Choosing the best electrical trade school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new profession. As we have covered 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 prerequisite that any electrical training program that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom instruction needs to offer a real-world context, and the curriculum should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in duration and the type of credential offered, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each training program offers different options for certification also. Perhaps the best approach to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to monitor a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you decide on is the best one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end result will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Kingston WA.
Other Cool Cities in Washington
Business Results 1 - 10 of 278