How to Pick a Welding Training Program near Goodyear Arizona
Finding the ideal welding school near Goodyear AZ is an important first step to starting your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to pick from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more notably, once you have fine tuned your options, how do you select the best one? Most prospective students begin by looking at the schools that are nearest to their homes. When they have identified those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are important issues when reviewing welding technical schools, but they are not the only ones. Other concerns include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s wise to establish a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we explore our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welder Certificate and Degree Training
There are a number of options to receive training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced courses than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are short summaries of the most prevalent welding programs available in the Goodyear AZ.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are normally made available by trade and technical schools and require about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed primarily to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for working welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still furnishing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
Some municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, therefore be sure to check for your location of future employment. As needed, the welder school you select should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will need to pass in addition to supplying the proper training to become a qualified welder.
Welding Certification Alternatives
There are multiple organizations that offer welder certifications, which test the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Numerous Goodyear AZ employers not only expect a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a respected agency such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered dependent on the type of work that the welder does. Just some of the skills that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with certain metal thicknesses
- Work with certain types of welds
- Work according to contract specifications
As already stated, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those calling for licensing, many additionally require certification for various kinds of work. Certification is also a way to prove to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and experienced welder. So just as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and make sure that the welder trade school you decide on prepares you for certification if needed.
How to Select a Welding Tech School
When you have chosen the credential you would like to attain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to assess schools. As you probably know, there are many welding vocational and trade schools in the Goodyear AZ area. That’s why it’s necessary to establish up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have already discussed 2 significant ones that most people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are very important qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be considered. After all, the school you choose is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So below are more factors you might want to consider before picking a welder tech school.
Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder tech school you pick is accredited by either a national or a regional agency. There are 2 standard kinds of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you select is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). In addition to helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, the accreditation can also assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable in Goodyear AZ for schools that are not accredited. Also, for those states or municipalities that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited also.
Apprenticeship and Job Assistance Programs. A large number of welder degree or diploma programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Find out if the schools you are considering assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools must have relationships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can rely upon for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and establish relationships within the Goodyear AZ welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that begin an educational program and finish it. It’s essential that the welder school you choose has a high completion rate. A lower rate may mean that the students who enrolled in the program were dissatisfied with the training, the instructors, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the caliber of training. A higher job placement rate will not only verify that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of Goodyear AZ employer relationships to help students secure employment or apprenticeships after graduation.
Modern Facilities and Equipment. After you have decreased your choice of welding programs to 2 or 3 options, you should think out visiting the campuses to inspect their facilities. Confirm that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are modern. Specifically, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be using in the field. If you are not sure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Goodyear AZ welding contractor if they can give you a few suggestions.
School Location. Even though we already briefly covered the relevance of location, there are a few additional points that we should deal with. You should bear in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the welder program you pick must be within commuting distance of your Goodyear AZ home. If you do opt to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welder certificate programs offered by community colleges. Also, if the school provides a job placement or apprenticeship program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in a region or state where you ultimately will desire to work.
Smaller Classes. Individualized training is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be lost in larger classes and not receive much personalized instruction. Find out what the typical class size is for the welding schools you are looking at. Inquire if you can sit in on some classes so that you can experience just how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, speak with a few of the students and get their opinions. Similarly, talk to a couple of the instructors and find out what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they have earned.
Convenient Class Schedules. Many people learn a new profession while still working at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are considering are convenient enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Goodyear AZ, make sure that the schools you are looking at offer those options. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you pick offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the protocol is to make up classes should you miss any due to illness, work or family circumstances.
Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Goodyear AZ?
Perhaps you live in the Goodyear Arizona area, or have decided to enroll in a Welding Program that has a campus near there. In either case, you may find this bit of history both interesting and informative.
Goodyear (O'odham: Valin Thak) is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States. It is a suburb of Phoenix and at the 2010 census had a population of 65,275, the third fastest-growing city in Arizona between 1990 and 2000. The 2015 population estimate was 79,003.
In 2008, Goodyear won the All-America City Award, sponsored by the National Civic League. The city is named after the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company. The company cultivated extensive farmland here to grow cotton for use in their tires.
Goodyear was established in 1917 with the purchase of 16,000 acres (65 km2) of land by the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company to cultivate cotton for vehicle tire cords. World War II was important to Goodyear in the 1940s as the current Phoenix Goodyear Airport was built, but after the war, the economy suffered. Goodyear became a town on November 19, 1946. At the time, it had 151 homes and 250 apartments, a grocery store, a barber shop, beauty shop and a gas station.
Online Welding Certificate and Degree Programs
Welding is very much a manual kind of profession, and for that reason not very compatible with online training. However, there are a few online welding programs offered by certain community colleges and trade schools in the greater Goodyear AZ area that may be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily cover such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a basis to begin their education and training. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials unless you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be accomplished online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for experienced welders that want to advance their expertise or perhaps obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should come across an online welding certificate or degree program, be very cautious and make certain that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
Select the Right Welding Trade School Goodyear AZ
Selecting the ideal welder training program will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to examine and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a prerequisite that any welder school that you are assessing includes a considerable amount of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and every student should have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom instruction needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in length and the type of credential provided, so you will need to decide what length of program and certificate or degree will best fulfill your needs. Every training program provides unique possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Invest some time to attend some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you pick is the right one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the final outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Goodyear AZ.
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