How Can I Become A Welder Colby KS

How to Enroll In the Right Welding Degree Program near Colby Kansas

Colby KS welding school graduateSelecting the right welder vocational school near Colby KS is an important first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to select from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your alternatives, how do you pick the right one? A number of people begin by checking out the schools that are closest to their homes. Once they have located those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are crucial concerns when reviewing welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other concerns 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 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.

Welding Degree and Certificate Programs

Colby KS welding trade school studentThere are a number of options to receive training as a welder in a trade or technical 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 made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief explanations of the most common welding programs available in the Colby KS.

  • Diploma and Certificate Programs are normally made available by trade and technical schools and require about 1 year to finish. 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 supplemental skills for working welders.
  • Associate Degree Programs will take two years to finish and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more extensive education than the diploma or certificate while still supplying the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.

Some states and municipalities do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of potential employment. As needed, the welder school you choose should prep you for any licensing exams that you will have to pass in addition to furnishing the proper training to become a qualified welder.

Welding Certification Options

Colby KS welder working in constructionThere are various organizations that provide welding certifications, which evaluate the skill level and knowledge of those applying. A large number of Colby KS 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 available based upon the kind of work that the welder performs. Some of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to

  • Work in compliance with specific codes
  • Work with certain metal thicknesses
  • Work with various kinds of welds
  • Perform based on contract specifications

As previously mentioned, various cities, states or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those calling for licensing, some also require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are an extremely skilled and knowledgeable welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and make sure that the welding vocational school you select preps you for certification if needed.

What to Ask Welder Trade Schools

Questions to ask Colby KS welding schoolsOnce you have decided on the credential you want to earn, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to compare schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are many welder trade and vocational schools in the Colby KS area. That’s why it’s essential to establish up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have already discussed 2 significant ones that most people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are essential qualifiers, they are not the only ones that must be considered. After all, the school you choose is going to furnish the education that will be the foundation of your new career as a welder. So below are some additional factors you may need to consider before selecting a welder technical school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welding technical school you pick is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. 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, such as Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, the accreditation may also help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Colby KS for schools that are not accredited. Also, for those states or municipalities that require licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.

Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welder diploma or degree programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will assist in placing you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Find out if the schools you are reviewing assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools should have relationships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can utilize for referrals. These programs can help students find employment and establish associations within the Colby KS welding community.

Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that start an instructional program and complete it. It’s crucial that the welding school you choose has a higher completion rate. A low rate may indicate that the students who joined 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 quality of training. A higher job placement rate will not only verify that the program has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Colby KS employer relationships to assist students obtain apprenticeships or employment after graduation.

Modern Facilities and Equipment. After you have decreased your choice of welding programs to two or three possibilities, you should consider visiting the campuses to inspect their facilities. Make sure that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be instructed on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be using in the field. If you are uncertain what to look for, and are already in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Colby KS welding contractor if they can give you some suggestions.

School Location. Although we already briefly talked about the relevance of location, there are a few additional issues that we need to address. You should remember that unless you are able to move, the welder school you choose needs to be within commuting distance of your Colby KS home. If you do opt to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides relocation costs there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school offers a job placement or apprenticeship program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school needs to be in a region or state where you subsequently will wish to work.

Small Classes. Personalized instruction is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not get much individualized instruction. Ask what the average class size is for the welding schools you are reviewing. Inquire if you can attend some classes so that you can witness how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with a few of the students and get their evaluations. Also, chat with a couple of the trainers and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they have earned.

Flexible Class Schedules. Many people learn a new profession while still employed at their present job. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are looking at are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Colby KS, make sure that the schools you are considering provide those alternatives. If you can only enroll part-time, make certain that the school you decide on offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

Online Welder Schools

student attending welding classes online in Colby KSWelding is truly a manual kind of trade, and consequently not very compatible with online training. Even so, there are a small number of online welding programs offered by specific community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Colby KS area that can be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These courses mainly cover such topics as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a foundation to begin their training and education. Nevertheless, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials until you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be performed online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for experienced welders that would like to advance their expertise or possibly obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful and make sure that the bulk of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Attending a Welding School in Colby KS?

If you have decided to enroll in a welder training program in the Colby Kansas area, you may find the following information both informative and helpful about the location of your new school campus.

Colby, Kansas

In 1882, a post office was established near the center of Thomas County. Area homesteaders lived under harsh conditions in sod houses, creating demand for a town to provide lumber and other provisions to incoming settlers. J.R. Colby, a local land assessor and preacher, obtained a patent to establish the town in April 1884, and land was acquired for the town site three miles north of the post office in March 1885. The following month, the Kansas Secretary of State issued the Town Charter. Kansas Gov. John Martin named Colby the county seat in 1885, and the city was incorporated in 1886. The Union Pacific Railroad reached the city in 1887, and the Rock Island Railroad followed the next year.[8]

In 1941 the St. Thomas Hospital was built as part of the Works Progress Administration plan to build hospitals. This was one of 130 new hospitals to be built with these funds, it was one of two built in Kansas alone. Within the last couple of years, it was renovated to apartments under the name St. Thomas Historic Residences. [9]

Colby is located at 39°23′32″N 101°02′51″W / 39.392093°N 101.047532°W / 39.392093; -101.047532 (39.392093, -101.047532) at an elevation of 3,159 feet (963 m).[5][11] It lies on the south side of Prairie Dog Creek, a tributary of the Republican River, in the High Plains region of the Great Plains.[12] A small tributary of the creek flows northeast through the town.[13] Located at the interchange of Interstate 70 and K-25 in northwestern Kansas, Colby is 212 mi (341 km) east-southeast of Denver, 232 mi (373 km) northwest of Wichita, and 347 mi (558 km) west of Kansas City.[12][14]

Find the Ideal Welding Technical School Colby KS

Choosing the right welder school will probably 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 How Can I Become A Welder. However, as we have discussed in this article, there are several factors that you will need to evaluate and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a necessity that any welder training that you are considering includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom education should provide a real-world frame of reference, and the course of study should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Each program provides different possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal way to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you select is the best one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the final outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Colby KS.

 

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