How to Select the Right Welding Certification Class near Clarksville Arkansas
Finding the right welder trade school near Clarksville AR is an important first step to beginning your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to select from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have fine tuned your options, how do you pick the best one? Many prospective students start by checking out the schools that are nearest to their homes. When they have found those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the least costly one. Yes, location and tuition cost are necessary considerations when reviewing welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other concerns include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before initiating your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s wise to develop a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we delve into our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welder Certificate and Degree Training Courses
There are a number of options available to obtain training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can obtain a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced degrees than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available along with an apprenticeship program. Below are short explanations of the most prevalent welding programs offered in the Clarksville AR.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are normally made available by technical and trade schools and take about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed largely to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more extensive education than the diploma or certificate while still furnishing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
Many states and municipalities do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so be sure to find out for your location of future employment. As required, the welding school you select should ready you for any licensing examinations that you will have to take in addition to furnishing the proper training to become a qualified welder.
Welder Certification Choices
There are various organizations that offer welder certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Numerous Clarksville AR employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a highly regarded agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered dependent on the kind of work that the welder performs. Some of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specified metal thicknesses
- Work with certain kinds of welds
- Perform in compliance with contract specifications
As already stated, various states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a way to demonstrate to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and qualified welder. So just as with licensing, check the requirements for your local area and confirm that the welding tech school you choose prepares you for certification as needed.
Points to Ask Welding Trade Schools
After you have chosen the credential you would like to obtain, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can begin to compare schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are many welding vocational and trade schools in the Clarksville AR area. That’s why it’s essential to establish in advance what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously discussed 2 significant ones that most people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that need to be looked at. After all, the program you decide on is going to furnish the education that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are some additional factors you might want to evaluate before choosing a welding tech school.
Accreditation. It’s essential that the welding technical school you pick is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are two standard types of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school offers, for example Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you pick is accredited, not just the school alone. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized 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 superior education, the accreditation may also help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable in Clarksville AR for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or municipalities that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.
Apprenticeship and Job Placement Programs. A large number of welder degree or diploma programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Find out if the schools you are considering assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The schools should have associations with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for referrals. These programs can assist students in finding employment and develop associations within the Clarksville AR welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that begin an educational program and complete it. It’s essential that the welder program you select has a higher completion rate. A low rate could 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 a good indicator of the caliber of training. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Clarksville AR contacts to help students secure apprenticeships or employment after graduation.
Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have limited your choice of welding programs to two or three options, you should consider visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Verify that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are modern. Specifically, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be using on the job. If you are unsure what to look for, and are already in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Clarksville AR welding contractor if they can give you some suggestions.
School Location. Although we already briefly discussed the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we need to cover. You should keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the welding school you pick must be within driving distance of your Clarksville AR home. If you do opt to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides relocation expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welding degree 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 instruction is essential for a manual trade such as welding. It’s possible to be lost in bigger classes and not get much individualized training. Find out what the average class size is for the welding programs you are considering. Inquire if you can sit in on some classes so that you can observe just how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with some of the students and get their evaluations. Also, talk with a couple of the teachers and find out what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they hold.
Convenient Class Schedules. Many people learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are considering are convenient enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Clarksville AR, make certain that the schools you are looking at offer those options. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, confirm that the school you decide on offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the protocol is to make up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family circumstances.
Online Welding Training Programs
Welding is very much a manual type of vocation, and for that reason not very compatible with training online. Having said that, there are a small number of online welding programs offered by certain community colleges and technical schools in the greater Clarksville AR area that may count toward a degree or certificate program. These classes primarily deal with such subjects as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a basis to begin their training and education. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or work with welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be done online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited 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 very cautious and make sure that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
Attending a Welding School in Clarksville AR?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Clarksville Arkansas area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Clarksville is a city in Johnson County, Arkansas, United States. As of the 2010 census the population was 9,178, up from 7,719 in 2000. As of 2016, the estimated population was 9,524. The city is the county seat of Johnson County. It is nestled between the Arkansas River and the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, and Interstate 40 and US Highway 64 intersect within the city limits. Clarksville-Johnson County is widely known for its peaches, scenic byways and abundance of natural outdoor recreational activities.
Clarksville is located in south-central Johnson County at 35°27′50″N 93°28′38″W / 35.46389°N 93.47722°W / 35.46389; -93.47722 (35.464006, -93.477089). The city is bordered to the south by the Arkansas River, although the city center is 3 miles (5 km) north of the river and west of Spadra Creek.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Clarksville has a total area of 19.2 square miles (49.7 km2), of which 18.5 square miles (47.9 km2) are land and 0.69 square miles (1.8 km2), or 3.66%, are water.
Select the Ideal Welding Technical School Clarksville AR
Picking the best welding training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to launch your new career. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Aluminium Welding Courses. However, as we have discussed in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are reviewing. It’s a necessity that any welding training program that you are considering includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student must have their personal welding machine to train with. Classroom instruction needs to offer a real-world frame of reference, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Training programs differ in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will have to decide what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers unique options for certification as well. Probably The ideal way to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Take the time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you select is the best one for you. With the proper training, effort and commitment, the final outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Clarksville AR.