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

How to Find the Right Welder Certificate Program near Stone Mountain Georgia

Stone Mountain GA welding school studentChoosing the ideal welding school near Stone Mountain GA is an essential first step to starting your new career as a professional welder. But since there are numerous schools to pick from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more notably, once you have fine tuned your options, how do you pick the right one? A number of prospective students begin by checking out the schools that are nearest to their homes. Once they have identified those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary issues when examining welder technical schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before initiating your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s sensible to create a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we delve into our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.

Welder Certificate and Degree Training Courses

Stone Mountain GA welder working on pipingThere are a number of options available to receive training as a welder in a trade or technical 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 degrees than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Below are short summaries of the most prevalent welding programs available in the Stone Mountain GA.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are normally made available by trade and technical schools and require about one year to finish. They are more hands-on training in scope, created largely to teach welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for working welders.
  • Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still furnishing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.

Some municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, so be sure to find out for your location of potential employment. As required, the welding school you choose should ready you for any licensing exams that you will have to take in addition to providing the suitable training to become a qualified welder.

Welder Certification Alternatives

Stone Mountain GA welder working on poleThere are multiple organizations that offer welder certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. A large number of Stone Mountain GA employers not only demand a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a highly regarded agency such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered based upon the type of work that the welder does. A few of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to

  • Work in compliance with specific codes
  • Work with specific metal thicknesses
  • Work with certain types of welds
  • Perform according to contract specifications

As formerly stated, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those mandating licensing, many additionally require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and knowledgeable welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and confirm that the welder trade school you decide on preps you for certification as needed.

How to Select a Welding Vocational Program

Stone Mountain GA welder working on carAs soon as you have decided on the credential you want to earn, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to compare schools. As you can imagine, there are a large number of welder trade and technical schools in the Stone Mountain GA area. That’s why it’s necessary to decide up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously covered two important ones that most people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the school you select is going to provide the instruction that will be the foundation of your new career as a welder. So following are more factors you may want to evaluate before picking a welding technical school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder tech school you decide on 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 an individual program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So confirm that the program you select is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, 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). In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, the accreditation may also assist in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable in Stone Mountain GA for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited also.

Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welder degree or certificate programs are provided in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship upon 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 partnerships with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for referrals. These programs can help students find employment and establish associations within the Stone Mountain GA 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 essential that the welder program you pick has a high completion rate. A low 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 caliber of training. A higher job placement rate will not only verify that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of Stone Mountain GA employer relationships to help students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have narrowed down your choice of welding programs to two or three possibilities, you should think out visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Confirm that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are modern. Specifically, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with on the job. If you are unsure 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 Stone Mountain GA welding contractor if they can give you a few pointers.

School Location. Although we previously briefly talked about the significance of location, there are a few additional issues that we need to address. You should keep in mind that unless you are able to move, the welder school you pick needs to be within driving distance of your Stone Mountain GA home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Furthermore, if the school offers an apprenticeship or job placement 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 ultimately will want to work.

Small Classes. Individualized instruction is essential for a manual trade such as welding. It’s easy to get overlooked in bigger classes and not get much one-on-one instruction. Ask what the typical class size is for the welder schools you are reviewing. Inquire if you can attend a couple of classes so that you can witness how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with a few of the students and get their opinions. Also, chat with some of the trainers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.

Flexible Class Schedules. Some people learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Check to see that the class schedules for the programs you are considering are convenient enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Stone Mountain GA, verify that the schools you are considering offer those choices. If you can only enroll part-time, make certain 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 emergencies.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Stone Mountain GA?

Perhaps you live in the Stone Mountain 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.

Stone Mountain, Georgia

Stone Mountain is a city in DeKalb County, Georgia, United States. The population was 5,802 at the 2010 census.[5] Stone Mountain is located in the eastern part of DeKalb County and is a suburb of Atlanta. It lies near to but does not include the geological formation Stone Mountain.

In 1822, the area that now makes up the city of Stone Mountain was made a part of the newly formed DeKalb County. A post office was created in 1834 on the old Augusta Road, and Andrew Johnson built a hotel along the road in 1836. At around the same time, Aaron Cloud built an observation tower at the summit of the mountain. Visitors to the mountain would travel to the area by rail and road, and then hike up the 1.1-mile (1.8 km) mountaintop trail to the top, where Cloud also had a restaurant and club.

By 1839, a general store was added, and a village was established under the name New Gibraltar. The name was officially changed to Stone Mountain by the Georgia legislature in 1847. The town is named for nearby Stone Mountain. During the Civil War, Stone Mountain village was destroyed by men under the command of General James B. McPherson on July 19, 1864.

Online Welding Training Programs

pipe welder at work in Stone Mountain GAWelding is very much a hands-on kind of profession, and therefore not very compatible with training online. Having said that, there are a few online welding programs offered by certain community colleges and trade schools in the greater Stone Mountain GA area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily cover such subjects as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a foundation to begin their training and education. Nevertheless, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials unless you actually do it. Naturally that can’t be accomplished online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for seasoned welders that desire to advance their knowledge or possibly earn a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be extremely careful and make certain that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Select the Ideal Welding Tech Program Stone Mountain GA

Choosing the right welder school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to start your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to evaluate and compare among the programs you are reviewing. It’s a must that any welder school that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be small in size and each student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world frame of reference, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will need to determine what length of program and certificate or degree will best serve your needs. Each program provides different options for certification also. Perhaps the best approach to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the students and faculty. Invest some time to monitor a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you decide on is the ideal one for you. With the right training, effort and commitment, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Stone Mountain GA.

 

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