How to Pick the Right Welding Training Class near Juneau Alaska
Finding the right welder trade school near Juneau AK is an important first step to starting your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to pick from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your alternatives, how do you pick the right one? Many prospective students begin by reviewing the schools that are nearest to their homes. When they have located those that are within commuting distance, they gravitate toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and tuition cost are important concerns when reviewing welder vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other concerns include such things as accreditation, reputation 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 chosen school must have. But before we examine our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welder Degree and Certificate Programs
There are several options available to get training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are offered in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced degrees than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available combined with an apprenticeship program. Following are short explanations of the most prevalent welding programs offered in the Juneau AK.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are generally made available by trade and technical schools and take about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in scope, created mainly to teach welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or supplemental skills for working welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology furnishes a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still furnishing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
Some municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore make sure to check for your location of future employment. If needed, the welder school you pick should ready you for any licensing examinations that you will need to pass in addition to furnishing the appropriate training to become a qualified welder.
Welder Certification Alternatives
There are multiple institutions that provide welder certifications, which assess the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Numerous Juneau AK employers not only expect a certificate or degree from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a highly regarded 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 specific metal thicknesses
- Work with specific types of welds
- Perform according to contract specifications
As already mentioned, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those mandating licensing, a number additionally require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are a highly skilled and knowledgeable welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and make certain that the welding vocational school you choose preps you for certification if needed.
What to Ask Welding Technical Schools
When you have decided on the credential you would like to obtain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are numerous welder trade and technical schools in the Juneau AK area. That’s why it’s necessary to establish in advance what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously covered two significant ones that many people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As stated, although they are very important qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the program you pick is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So following are more factors you might want to evaluate before choosing a welder vocational school.
Accreditation. It’s essential that the welding vocational school you pick is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are 2 basic kinds of accreditation. The school may earn Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a specific program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So confirm that the program you pick is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). In addition to helping ensure that you get a quality education, the accreditation may also help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not available in Juneau AK for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or municipalities that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.
Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welding diploma or degree programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Various other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Find out if the schools you are looking at help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. These schools must have relationships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can rely upon for referrals. These programs can assist students in finding employment and establish associations within the Juneau AK welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that start an academic program and complete it. It’s crucial that the welder program you choose has a higher completion rate. A low rate may indicate that the students who enrolled in the program were dissatisfied with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also an indication of the quality of training. A higher job placement rate will not only verify that the program has an excellent reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Juneau AK employer relationships to help students secure apprenticeships or employment after graduation.
Modern Facilities and Equipment. Once you have narrowed down your choice of welding programs to 2 or 3 possibilities, you should consider visiting the campuses to look over their facilities. Confirm that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with in the field. If you are unsure 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 Juneau AK welding contractor if they can give you a few pointers.
School Location. Although we previously briefly covered the significance of location, there are a few additional issues that we should cover. You should bear in mind that unless you have the ability to move, the welding school you pick needs to be within driving distance of your Juneau AK home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, besides relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Also, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, often their placements are within the school’s regional community. So the location of the school should be in a region or state where you subsequently will wish to work.
Smaller Classes. One-on-one training is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not receive much individualized training. Ask 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 witness how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with a few of the students and get their evaluations. Also, talk to a couple of the teachers and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.
Flexible Class Scheduling. Some people learn a new trade while still working at their present job. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are looking at are convenient enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Juneau AK, verify that the schools you are considering offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, confirm that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Online Welding Degree and Certificate Programs
Welding is very much a hands-on kind of trade, and for that reason not extremely compatible with online training. However, there are some online welding classes offered by certain community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Juneau AK area that can count toward a degree or certificate program. These classes mainly deal with such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to initiate their education and training. Nevertheless, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be performed online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for seasoned welders that would like to advance their expertise or possibly earn a more advanced degree. So if you should come across an online welding degree or certificate program, be extremely careful and confirm that the majority of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Attending a Welding School in Juneau AK?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Juneau Alaska area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
The City and Borough of Juneau (/ˈdʒuːnoʊ/ JOO-noh; Tlingit: Dzánti K'ihéeni [ˈtsántʰì kʼìˈhíːnì]), commonly known as Juneau, is the capital city of Alaska. It is a unified municipality on Gastineau Channel in the Alaskan panhandle, and it is the second largest city in the United States by area. Juneau has been the capital of Alaska since 1906, when the government of what was the District of Alaska was moved from Sitka as dictated by the U.S. Congress in 1900. The municipality unified on July 1, 1970, when the city of Juneau merged with the city of Douglas and the surrounding Greater Juneau Borough to form the current municipality, which is larger by area than both Rhode Island and Delaware.
Downtown Juneau (58°18′07″N 134°25′11″W / 58.30194°N 134.41972°W / 58.30194; -134.41972) is nestled at the base of Mount Juneau and across the channel from Douglas Island. As of the 2010 census, the City and Borough had a population of 31,276. In 2014, the population estimate from the United States Census Bureau was 32,406, making it the second most populous city in Alaska after Anchorage.Fairbanks, however, is the state's second most populous metropolitan area, with roughly 100,000 residents. Juneau's daily population can increase by roughly 6,000 people from visiting cruise ships between the months of May and September.
The city is named after a gold prospector from Quebec, Joe Juneau, though the place was for a time called Rockwell and then Harrisburg (after Juneau's co-prospector, Richard Harris). The Tlingit name of the town is Dzántik'i Héeni ("Base of the Flounder’s River," dzánti ‘flounder,’ –kʼi ‘base,’ héen ‘river’), and Auke Bay just north of Juneau proper is called Áak'w ("Little lake," áa ‘lake,’ -kʼ ‘diminutive’) in Tlingit. The Taku River, just south of Juneau, was named after the cold t'aakh wind, which occasionally blows down from the mountains.
Find the Right Welding Vocational School Juneau AK
Selecting the best welder training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to start your new trade. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Underwater Welding School. However, as we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to evaluate and compare among the programs you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any welder training program that you are assessing includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world frame of reference, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Courses differ in duration and the type of credential offered, so you will need to decide what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Every training program provides different options for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you pick is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Juneau AK.