How to Become an Electrician in Mazomanie Wisconsin
The first step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is finding an electrician trade school near Mazomanie WI. But with so many technical schools to choose from, just how do you undertake making sure that you enroll in the right one? Especially since there are so many points to evaluate. For example, some prospective students will begin by looking for schools that are close to their residence. Once they have found some that are within driving range, they will pick the one with the lowest tuition. Even though cost and location are important, they are not the sole qualifications that need to be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifications should influence your final decision when choosing an electrician school. We will address that checklist in more detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about being an electrician and the instructional options that are available.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Mazomanie WI
There are three general ways to get electrician training in a trade or technical school near Mazomanie WI. You may choose a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at some schools, but are not as common as the other three alternatives. Frequently these programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship, which are mandated by the majority of states to become licensed or if you want to become certified. Following are brief summaries of the 3 most prevalent programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually provided by Wisconsin technical and trade schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards individuals who want to enter an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require two years to complete and are provided by Wisconsin junior or community colleges, commonly as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while providing the foundation that readies students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier mentioned, Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain Wisconsin institutions, but are less popular at 4 years than the other briefer programs. Many states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases 4 years be performed before licensing. For that reason, most students are eager to begin their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Mazomanie WI can carry out a wide range of functions, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in buildings and homes comply with code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in most municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but usually about four to five years of practical experience is called for in order to take the licensing exam. The exams commonly assess general knowledge and electrical theory, along with knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional way for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available differ by state and can be obtained in many specializations, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually involves three 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) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician vocational school that you choose not only delivers a strong educational foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing exams that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Programs Online in Mazomanie WI
An option that you might have looked at is enrolling in an online electrician school to earn a degree or a certificate. Even though online schools are becoming more accepted as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this case they are not completely internet based. Virtually all electrician training programs require partial attendance on-campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the remainder of the classes may be attended online, distance learning might be a more practical option for students that have limited time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online training programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional alternatives. Driving expenses from Mazomanie WI are also reduced and some of the study materials may be available online as well. Each of these benefits can make electrician online tech schools more affordable and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will cover in our due diligence checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
When you have decided to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to narrow down your school options. Considering that there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Mazomanie WI area, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must satisfy. The initial two that we talked about were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an degree online, then that needs to be an option that your chosen school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be critical when making your selection, there are additional factors that need to be taken into account also. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess prior to enrolling in an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade schools have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Make certain that the Mazomanie WI program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping make certain that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, a number of states mandate 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 finish the program. A lower completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the course and quit. It might also indicate that the teachers were not competent to train 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 graduates, 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 field, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Mazomanie WI students acquire apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician trade programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrician businesses or trade unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with Mazomanie WI area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by furnishing practical training, but it also supplies job 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 on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical tech you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Mazomanie WI electrical company if they can provide some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Mazomanie residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much one-on-one training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk to several of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk with a few of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Mazomanie WI, confirm that the schools you are looking at provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Mazomanie WI?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Mazomanie WI area.
Mazomanie /ˌmeɪzoʊˈmeɪni/ is a village in Dane County, Wisconsin, United States. The population was 1,652 at the 2010 census. The village is located within the Town of Mazomanie. It is part of the Madison Metropolitan Statistical Area.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 1.86 square miles (4.82 km2), of which, 1.83 square miles (4.74 km2) of it is land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2) is water.
The land on which rests the town of Mazomanie fell within the hunting grounds of the Hočąk, or Winnebago, Indian nation. About a decade after the Winnebago cession of 1832, there were only a small number of white settlers in the area. What precipitated the birth of the town was the advent of the Milwaukee and Mississippi Railroad in 1855, which passed through the region to connect Milwaukee with La Crosse. The superintendent of the railroad, Edward Brodhead, gave the village its name; many years later, he explained its derivation: “He (Mazomanie) was an Indian chief in our state and was well known to the old gentleman, H.L. Dousman, who said the Indians pronounced it as though it was spelled Man-zo-ma-nie and the English of it is Iron Horse, which I adopted for the name of a railroad town and also for the name of my horse.” This distinguished chief was Mą́zamąnį́ga, "Iron Walker."
Pick the Right Electrical Technical School near Mazomanie WI
Choosing the ideal electrical trade school will probably be the most important decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are many factors that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are considering. It’s a necessity that any electrician training that you are examining includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be smaller in size and every student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be current and conform 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 degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every training program provides different possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best way to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the faculty and students. Take the time to attend a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you select is the best one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Mazomanie WI.
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