How to Choose the Right Welder Training Program near Clarkdale Arizona
Finding the ideal welding school near Clarkdale AZ is an important first step to launching your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to select from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your alternatives, how do you select the right one? Many prospective students begin by reviewing the schools that are nearest to their residences. When they have located those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the least costly one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary concerns when examining welding trade schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before initiating your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s sensible to develop 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.
Welding Degree and Certificate Programs
There are a number of options available to obtain training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can obtain a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are offered in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief summaries of the most typical welding programs offered in the Clarkdale AZ.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are normally made available by trade and technical schools and require about one year to complete. They are more hands-on training in scope, created primarily to teach welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete 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 providing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.
Some states and municipalities do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore be sure to find out for your location of potential employment. If required, the welding school you pick should prep you for any licensing examinations that you will have to take in addition to providing the suitable training to become a professional welder.
Welding Certification Options
There are several organizations that offer welder certifications, which assess the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Numerous Clarkdale AZ employers not only demand a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a respected organization such as the American Welding Society (AWS). Different certifications are offered dependent on the type of work that the welder does. A few of the skills that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specified metal thicknesses
- Work with certain kinds of welds
- Perform in compliance with contract specifications
As formerly mentioned, various cities, states 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 prove to employers that you are a highly skilled and qualified welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your local area and make sure that the welder tech school you choose preps you for certification as needed.
Points to Ask Welder Trade Programs
As soon as you have decided on the credential you want to obtain, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can start to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are many welder trade and vocational schools in the Clarkdale AZ area. That’s why it’s necessary to establish up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously discussed 2 important ones that most people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that need to be looked at. After all, the school you pick is going to provide the education that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So following are more factors you might need to consider before choosing a welder tech school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welder technical school you decide on is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are two standard 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 offers, for example Welding Technology. So confirm that the program you select is accredited, not just the school alone. 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 ensure that you get a superior education, the accreditation can also assist in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Clarkdale AZ for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.
Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. Many welder diploma or degree programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship upon graduation. Ask if the schools you are reviewing help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. The schools must have relationships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. Older 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 Clarkdale AZ welding community.
Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that begin an instructional program and finish it. It’s essential that the welder school you choose has a higher completion rate. A lower rate could signify that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the training, the instructors, 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Clarkdale AZ contacts to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment after graduation.
Up-to-date Facilities and Equipment. Once you have decreased your selection of welding schools to two or three possibilities, you should think out visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Make sure that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are up-to-date. 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 already in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Clarkdale AZ welding professional if they can give you some tips.
School Location. Although we already briefly talked about the importance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we should address. You should remember that unless you are able to relocate, the welding program you select must be within commuting distance of your Clarkdale AZ home. If you do opt to enroll in 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 offers an apprenticeship or job placement program, most likely their placements are within the school’s regional community. So the location of the school needs to be in a region or state where you ultimately will desire to work.
Smaller Classes. One-on-one instruction is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s possible to be overlooked in larger classes and not obtain much one-on-one instruction. Find out what the usual class size is for the welder schools you are reviewing. Inquire if you can attend some classes so that you can experience how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, speak with some of the students and get their feedback. Similarly, chat with a few of the instructors and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they hold.
Flexible Class Schedules. Some people learn a new profession while still employed at their present job. Make sure that the class schedules for the schools you are looking at are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Clarkdale AZ, verify that the schools you are looking at provide those options. If you can only enroll part-time, confirm that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make up classes if you you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Online Welder Courses
Welding is truly a manual type of trade, and for that reason not extremely suitable for online training. Having said that, there are a few online welding courses offered by specific community colleges and trade schools in the greater Clarkdale AZ area that may be credited toward a degree or certificate program. These courses primarily cover such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a foundation to begin their training and education. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be accomplished online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for experienced welders that want to advance their knowledge or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely careful and confirm that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Attending a Welding School in Clarkdale AZ?
If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Clarkdale Arizona area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.
Clarkdale (Yavapai: Saupkasuiva) is a town in Yavapai County, Arizona, United States. The Verde River flows through the town as does Bitter Creek, an intermittent tributary of the river. According to the 2010 census, the population of the town was 4,097.
Clarkdale was founded in 1912 as a company smelter town by William A. Clark, for his copper mine in nearby Jerome. Clarkdale was one of the most modern mining towns in the world, including telephone, telegraph, electrical, sewer and spring water services, and was an early example of a planned community. The Clark Mansion, a local landmark, was built in the late 1920s by William Clark III, Clark's grandson and heir to the United Verde Copper Company. The structure, east of town across the Verde River near Pecks Lake, was destroyed in 2010 by a fire of "suspicious" origin.
The town center and business district were built in Spanish Colonial style, and feature the Clark Memorial Clubhouse and Memorial Library, both still in use. The Clubhouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The entire original town site is also on the National Register as the Clarkdale Historic District.
Pick the Right Welding Technical Program Clarkdale AZ
Picking the right welding school will probably be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Pipeline Welding Training. However, as we have addressed in this article, there are several things that you will need to evaluate and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any welder school that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and each student should have their personal welding machine to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers unique options for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal way to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Invest some time to attend a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you choose is the right one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the final result will be a new trade as a professional welder in Clarkdale AZ.