How to Pick a Welding Training Class near Tunnel Hill Georgia
Finding the right welding vocational school near Tunnel Hill GA is an essential first step to starting your new career as a professional welder. But since there are numerous schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more notably, once you have fine tuned your choices, how do you select the right one? Many people begin by looking at the schools that are closest to their residences. Once they have found those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and tuition cost are important considerations when examining welder technical schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s wise to develop a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we examine our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welding Degree and Certificate Training Programs
There are several alternatives available to obtain training as a welder in a trade or vocational school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate 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 combined with an apprenticeship program. Below are brief descriptions of the most common welding programs offered in the Tunnel Hill GA.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually made available by trade and technical schools and require about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed largely to teach welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to finish and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more extensive education than the diploma or certificate while still supplying the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
A number of states and municipalities do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore make sure to check for your location of future employment. As required, the welder school you select should ready you for any licensing exams that you will need to pass in addition to supplying the proper training to become a qualified welder.
Welding Certification Alternatives
There are several institutions that offer welder certifications, which assess the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Numerous Tunnel Hill GA employers not only expect a certificate or degree from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a respected organization like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered dependent on the type of work that the welder does. Some of the skills that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Work in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specific metal thicknesses
- Work with certain kinds of welds
- Operate based on contract specifications
As earlier mentioned, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, a number additionally require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are an extremely skilled and qualified welder. So just as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and confirm that the welding trade school you decide on preps you for certification if needed.
How to Select a Welder Technical School
As soon as you have decided on the credential you want to earn, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to compare schools. As you can imagine, there are numerous welding trade and vocational schools in the Tunnel Hill GA area. That’s why it’s necessary to determine in advance what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have already covered a couple of important ones that most people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that need to be considered. After all, the school you choose is going to furnish the education that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So below are more factors you may want to consider before picking a welding technical school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welder technical school you decide on is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are 2 basic kinds of accreditation. The school may attain Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school has, such as Welding Technology. So verify that the program you select is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). In addition to helping make sure that you get a superior education, the accreditation can also help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Tunnel Hill GA for non-accredited schools. Finally, for those states or municipalities that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.
Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. Many welder certificate or degree programs are provided in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Various other schools will assist in placing you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Find out if the schools you are reviewing help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. The schools must have partnerships with local unions and other 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 help students find employment and establish associations within the Tunnel Hill GA welding community.
Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that begin an educational program and complete it. It’s crucial that the welding school you pick has a higher completion rate. A lower rate might mean that the students who joined the program were dissatisfied with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also an indication of the quality of training. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Tunnel Hill GA contacts to assist students secure apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.
Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have limited your selection of welding schools to 2 or 3 options, you should think out visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Verify that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are up-to-date. In particular, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be using on the job. If you are not sure 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 Tunnel Hill GA welding professional if they can give you a few tips.
School Location. Even though we previously briefly talked about the importance of location, there are a few additional issues that we should cover. You should remember that unless you can relocate, the welding program you select needs to be within driving distance of your Tunnel Hill GA home. If you do opt to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving expenses there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Also, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, often 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 desire to work.
Small Classes. Individualized instruction is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not get much personalized training. Find out what the usual class size is for the welding programs you are reviewing. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can see just how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with a few of the students and get their opinions. Similarly, chat with some of the instructors and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they hold.
Flexible Class Scheduling. Some people learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are convenient enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Tunnel Hill GA, confirm that the schools you are reviewing offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, verify 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, illness or family responsibilities.
Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Tunnel Hill GA?
Perhaps you live in the Tunnel Hill 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.
Tunnel Hill, Georgia
Tunnel Hill is a town in northwest Whitfield County and southern Catoosa County, Georgia, United States. It is part of the Dalton Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 1,209 at the 2000 census. The town is named for the Chetoogeta Mountain Tunnel, a 1,497-foot (456 m) railroad tunnel built in the late 1840s.
The community was first known as Doe Run. It was incorporated on March 4, 1848, as Tunnelsville, and changed its name in 1856 to Tunnel Hill. Both names refer to a nearby 1,497-foot (456 m) railroad tunnel through Chetoogeta Mountain, officially dedicated on October 31, 1849 by Etowah steel-maker Mark A. Cooper on behalf of the state-owned Western & Atlantic Railroad.
The railroad tunnel was the first to be completed south of the Mason–Dixon line. The rail line operated during the late 1840s with passengers and freight being portaged over the mountain while the tunnel was constructed. Another tunnel next to it, completed in 1928, is still used by CSX Transportation. The original Chetoogeta Mountain Tunnel is now paved for tourists to walk through; it has even more historic value, as the Great Locomotive Chase passed through it in 1862.
Online Welder Training
Welding is truly a hands-on type of profession, and therefore not extremely suitable for online training. Even so, there are a small number of online welding programs offered by certain community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Tunnel Hill GA area that can be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily deal with such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a foundation to start their education and training. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or work with welding materials unless you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be done online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for experienced welders that would like to advance their knowledge or perhaps obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful 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 Tech School Tunnel Hill GA
Choosing the ideal welding school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to start your new career. As we have addressed in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare between the programs you are considering. It’s a necessity that any welding training program that you are considering includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and every student should have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs vary in length and the type of credential offered, so you will need to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best serve your needs. Every program provides different possibilities for certification also. Perhaps The ideal way to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Take the time to monitor a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you select is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the final result will be a new career as a professional welder in Tunnel Hill GA.