Welding Schools Near Me | How to Become a Welder – Clarkesville GA

How to Find the Right Welder Degree Program near Clarkesville Georgia

Clarkesville GA welding school studentSelecting the ideal welding trade school near Clarkesville GA is an important first step to starting your new career as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have fine tuned your choices, how do you select the best one? A number of prospective students begin by reviewing the schools that are closest to their residences. When they have found those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are necessary considerations when reviewing welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before starting your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s sensible to create 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 Programs

Clarkesville GA welder working on pipingThere are multiple options to obtain training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can receive a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced courses than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available combined with an apprenticeship program. Below are short summaries of the most common welding programs available in the Clarkesville GA.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually made available by trade and technical schools and require about a year to finish. They are more hands-on training in scope, fashioned largely 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 2 years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more extensive education than the certificate or diploma while still providing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.

A number of states and municipalities do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of potential employment. If required, the welder school you choose should prep you for any licensing examinations that you will need to pass in addition to furnishing the suitable training to become a qualified welder.

Welder Certification Options

Clarkesville GA welder working on poleThere are multiple organizations that provide welder certifications, which test the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Numerous Clarkesville GA 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 based on the type of work that the welder performs. 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 various kinds of welds
  • Work based on contract specifications

As formerly mentioned, some states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those calling for licensing, some also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a way to prove to employers that you are a highly skilled and knowledgeable 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 if needed.

How to Choose a Welding Trade School

Clarkesville GA welder working on carWhen you have chosen the credential you want to obtain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are numerous welder vocational and trade schools in the Clarkesville GA area. That’s why it’s important to establish up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously covered two significant ones that many people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that need to be considered. After all, the program you pick is going to provide the instruction that will be the foundation of your new career as a welder. So following are some additional factors you might want to evaluate before choosing a welder vocational school.

Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welder technical school you pick is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are two standard kinds of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school alone. Additionally, 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). Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, the accreditation might also help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered in Clarkesville GA for non-accredited schools. Finally, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited as well.

Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous welder diploma or degree programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Ask if the schools you are reviewing help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools must have associations with local unions and other 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 help students find employment and establish associations within the Clarkesville GA welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that start an academic program and finish it. It’s essential that the welding school you pick has a high completion rate. A reduced rate could signify that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the training, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also an indication of the caliber of training. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Clarkesville GA contacts to assist students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have decreased your choice of welding schools to two or three options, you should consider going to the campuses to look over their facilities. Confirm that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be taught on are up-to-date. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be using on the job. 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. If not, ask a local Clarkesville GA welding contractor if they can give you some tips.

School Location. Even though we previously briefly discussed the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we should deal with. You should remember that unless you have the ability to move, the welder program you choose needs to be within driving distance of your Clarkesville GA home. If you do choose to enroll in an out-of-state school, apart from relocation expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly the case for welding degree programs offered by community colleges. Furthermore, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in an area or state where you subsequently will want to work.

Small Classes. One-on-one instruction is essential for a manual trade such as welding. It’s easy to get overlooked in larger classes and not get much personalized instruction. Ask what the typical class size is for the welding programs you are considering. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can observe just how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, speak with a few of the students and get their opinions. Also, talk with some of the teachers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they have earned.

Convenient Class Scheduling. Lots of folks learn a new trade while still employed at their present job. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only go to classes in the evenings or on weekends near Clarkesville GA, confirm that the schools you are considering provide those options. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, confirm that the school you decide on offers part-time enrollment. Also, check to see what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family emergencies.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Clarkesville GA?

Perhaps you live in the Clarkesville Georgia 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.

Clarkesville, Georgia

Clarkesville is located in central Habersham County at 34°36′38″N 83°31′30″W / 34.61056°N 83.52500°W / 34.61056; -83.52500 (34.610521, -83.525056),[7] on the south side of the Soquee River, a southwest-flowing tributary of the Chattahoochee River. It is 4 miles (6 km) north of Demorest, 15 miles (24 km) east of Cleveland, 13 miles (21 km) west of Toccoa, and 13 miles southwest of Tallulah Falls.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.49 square miles (6.45 km2), of which 2.46 square miles (6.37 km2) are land and 0.03 square miles (0.08 km2), or 1.20%, are water.[4]

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 1,248 people, 580 households, and 335 families residing in the city. The population density was 670.6 people per square mile (259.1/km²). There were 639 housing units at an average density of 343.3 per square mile (132.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 90.06% White, 7.77% African American, 0.16% Native American, 0.72% Asian, 0.32% from other races, and 0.96% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.36% of the population.

Online Welder Classes

pipe welder at work in Clarkesville GAWelding is truly a hands-on type of vocation, and consequently not extremely compatible with online training. Having said that, there are a small number of online welding classes offered by certain community colleges and technical schools in the greater Clarkesville GA area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes primarily cover such subjects as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to start their training and education. Nevertheless, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials unless you actually do it. Naturally that can’t be done online. These skills have to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that want to advance their expertise or possibly attain a more advanced degree. So if you should come across an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely cautious and make sure that the larger part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Pick the Best Welding Technical School Clarkesville GA

Picking the ideal welding training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new career. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to assess and compare among the programs you are looking at. It’s a necessity that any welder school that you are examining includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their own welding machine to train on. Classroom teaching should provide a real-world perspective, 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 need to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best serve your needs. Each training program offers unique options for certification as well. Perhaps the best means to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you pick is the best one for you. With the proper training, effort and commitment, the end result will be a new trade as a professional welder in Clarkesville GA.

 

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