How to Become an Electrician in Craigsville West Virginia
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Craigsville WV. But with so many vocational schools to choose from, just how do you go about making sure that you enroll in the best one? Especially because there are a number of factors to examine. For instance, some potential students will start by searching for schools that are close to their home. When they have found a few that are within driving range, they will decide on the one with the least expensive tuition. Even though cost and location are significant, they are not the only things that should be considered. Also critical are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, in addition to their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifications should influence your final judgment when picking an electrician school. We will address that checklist in more detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the training options that are available.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Programs near Craigsville WV
There are three general approaches to receive electrician training in a technical or vocational school near Craigsville WV. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at some schools, but are not as common as the first three options. In many cases these programs are made available together with an apprenticeship program, which are required by the majority of states in order to be licensed or if you want to earn certification. Bellow are short explanations of the 3 most typical programs available.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are typically provided by West Virginia trade and technical schools and take approximately a year to finish. They furnish a good foundation and are geared towards those who want to enter an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve two years to finish and are offered by West Virginia junior or community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while providing the foundation that prepares students to join their apprenticeship program.
As previously stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at certain West Virginia institutions, 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 completed before licensing. Therefore, most students are anxious to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician License and Certification Criteria
Electricians in Craigsville WV can undertake a multitude of services, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes comply with code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly around 4 to 5 years of experience is called for before taking the licensing examination. The exams commonly test electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional way for an electrician to differentiate her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and can be acquired in several specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases includes 3 levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician trade school that you pick not only furnishes a solid academic foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any licensing and certification examinations that you might need to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Training Classes in Craigsville WV
A possibility that you might have contemplated is choosing an online electrician program to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online schools have become more prevalent as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this situation they are not totally internet based. Virtually all electrician schools require partial attendance on-campus to receive practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes may be accessed online, internet learning may be a more convenient option for individuals that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus numerous online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their on-campus competitors. Driving costs from Craigsville WV are also reduced and a portion of the study materials may be available online also. All of these advantages can make online electrician vocational schools more economical and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
What to Ask Electrician Trade Schools
When you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to refine your school options. Since there are numerous electrician vocational and trade schools in the Craigsville WV 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 needs to be an option that your final school offers. And while 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 before choosing an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician trade programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They may earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as electrical technology. Confirm that the Craigsville WV school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping make certain that you acquire a superior education, it can help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Additionally, a number of 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 considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate may indicate that students were unhappy with the course and dropped out. It might also indicate that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s also imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which can result in more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Craigsville WV students secure apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician vocational programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical companies or trade unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with Craigsville WV area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Craigsville WV electrical contractor if they can give you some suggestions. Also keep in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Craigsville home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there can be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much individualized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Speak with a few of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk with a few of the instructors and learn what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Craigsville WV, verify that the schools you are comparing offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, 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 because of work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Craigsville WV?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Craigsville WV area.
Craigsville, West Virginia
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,204 people, 920 households, and 655 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 364.1 people per square mile (140.7/km²). There were 1,007 housing units at an average density of 166.4/sq mi (64.3/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 99.36% White, 0.09% African American, 0.27% Native American, 0.05% Asian, and 0.23% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.23% of the population.
There were 920 households out of which 30.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.0% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.7% were non-families. 25.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.40 and the average family size was 2.86.
In the CDP, the population was spread out with 24.1% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 26.1% from 25 to 44, 25.7% from 45 to 64, and 15.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 91.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.9 males.
Choose the Right Electrical Tech School near Craigsville WV
Selecting the best electrician training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have discussed in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare among the training programs you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any electrical tech school that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should offer a real-world context, and the training program should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will have to decide what length of program and certificate or degree will best serve your needs. Every training program offers different options for certification as well. Probably The ideal way to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you choose is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end result will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Craigsville WV.
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