How to Enroll In a Welding Certification Course near Kingsland Georgia
Locating the ideal welder school near Kingsland GA is an essential first step to starting your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are numerous schools to select from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have fine tuned your choices, how do you pick the right one? Most people start by looking at the schools that are nearest to their residences. Once they have found those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the least costly one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary issues when examining welder trade 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 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.
Welding Certificate and Degree Training Courses
There are a number of options available to receive training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can earn a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are offered 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. Following are short descriptions of the most typical welding programs available in the Kingsland GA.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually made available by trade and technical schools and take about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, created largely to teach welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized 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 furnishes a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still furnishing the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
Many municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, so don’t forget to check for your location of potential employment. If needed, the welding school you select should prep you for any licensing exams that you will need to pass in addition to providing the proper training to become a professional welder.
Welder Certification Choices
There are multiple organizations that offer welding certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Many Kingsland GA employers not only demand a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a respected agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A variety of certifications are available dependent on the type of work that the welder performs. Just some of the skills that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with certain metal thicknesses
- Work with certain types of welds
- Work according to contract specifications
As already stated, some cities, states or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some additionally require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and knowledgeable welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and make certain that the welding technical school you select readies you for certification if needed.
How to Pick a Welding Vocational School
After you have decided on the credential you would like to earn, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to compare schools. As you can imagine, there are many welding trade and vocational schools in the Kingsland GA area. That’s why it’s necessary to establish up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously discussed two important ones that most people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As stated, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that need to be looked at. After all, the school you select is going to provide the instruction that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are more factors you might want to evaluate before choosing a welding tech school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welding tech school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are 2 basic types of accreditation. The school may earn 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 certain that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school alone. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping make sure that you receive a superior education, the accreditation may also assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable in Kingsland GA for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.
Apprenticeship and Job Assistance Programs. Many welding degree or diploma programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will assist in placing you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Find out if the schools you are looking at assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools must have partnerships with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can help students find employment and develop associations within the Kingsland GA welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that begin an educational program and complete it. It’s essential that the welding program you choose has a higher completion rate. A reduced rate could signify that the students who joined the program were unhappy with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the quality of training. A high job placement rate will not only verify that the program has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Kingsland GA contacts to assist students obtain apprenticeships or employment after graduation.
Modern Equipment and Facilities. After you have limited your selection of welding schools to two or three possibilities, you should think out visiting the campuses to inspect their facilities. Make sure 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 on the job. If you are uncertain 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 Kingsland GA welding contractor if they can give you some tips.
School Location. Even though we already briefly covered the importance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we should deal with. You should keep in mind that unless you have the ability to move, the welder school you pick must be within driving distance of your Kingsland GA home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving expenses there might be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welder degree programs offered by community colleges. Also, if the school offers a job placement or apprenticeship program, often their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school needs to be in an area or state where you subsequently will wish to work.
Smaller Classes. Individualized training is important for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be lost in larger classes and not get much personalized training. Ask what the usual class size is for the welding schools you are reviewing. Inquire if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can see how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, talk with some of the students and get their feedback. Similarly, 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 Scheduling. Many people learn a new trade while still working at their current job. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are considering are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Kingsland GA, verify that the schools you are assessing offer those alternatives. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you decide on offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Kingsland GA?
Perhaps you live in the Kingsland 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.
The Kingsland Commercial Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places March 17, 1994. It includes the area surrounding South Lee Street between King Street and William Street.
In 1788, the King family bought large amounts of land west of St. Marys and named the plantation Woodlawn. The great-grandson of John King, William King, later built a home on "King's Land." On Christmas Day in 1893 the first passenger train (the Florida Central and Peninsular Railroad, today's CSX Railroad) rolled into Camden County right across King’s property. As Mr. William King's house was the only one in sight, the railroad company named the area “Kings Land.” With the coming of the railroad, people from all areas began to build in and around Kings Land setting a new era in motion. After the railroad was developed, William Henry King mapped out the town to be located on his property and named it in his honor. Stores and businesses were open and he became the first mayor when the City of Kingsland was incorporated in 1908. Presumably, this was when the town’s two-word title became only one word. The first Kingsland newspaper was published on April 5, 1895 by the Southeast Georgian.
In 1928, the nation's first Maine to Miami road, known in Georgia as the Dixie Highway, was being planned, although it wouldn’t open and pass through Kingsland until 1927. Until that time most people used the St Marys River ferry to cross between St Marys and Kingsland. Before the widespread use of automobiles, water traffic was an essential means of transportation for the residents and businesses of Camden County.
Online Welder Classes
Welding is truly a manual type of vocation, and therefore not very suitable for online training. However, there are a few online welding programs offered by specific community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Kingsland GA area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily cover such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a foundation to begin their education and training. Nevertheless, 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 seasoned welders that want to advance their expertise or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful and confirm that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
Select the Best Welding Vocational Program Kingsland GA
Choosing the ideal welding school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to start your new trade. As we have discussed in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a must that any welder school that you are assessing includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and every student should have their own welding machine to train on. Classroom education should provide a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and conform with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the type of credential provided, so you will have to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best serve your needs. Each training program offers unique possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best means to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the teachers and students. Take the time to attend a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you decide on is the right one for you. With the proper training, effort and commitment, the end outcome will be a new career as a professional welder in Kingsland GA.