Welding Schools Near Me | How to Become a Welder – Apple River IL

How to Enroll In a Welding Trade School near Apple River Illinois

Apple River IL welding school studentSelecting the ideal welder school near Apple River IL is an important first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to choose from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have fine tuned your options, how do you pick the best one? Many prospective students start by looking at the schools that are closest to their residences. When they have identified those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary issues when examining welder technical 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 vocational school to become a welder, it’s prudent 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 Certificate and Degree Training Courses

Apple River IL welder working on pipingThere are multiple alternatives available to get training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can earn a diploma, a certificate 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 offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Following are short explanations of the most common welding programs offered in the Apple River IL.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally offered by trade and technical schools and take about a year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed mainly to teach welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for experienced welders.
  • Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still supplying the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.

Many municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, therefore be sure to find out for your location of future employment. As required, the welding school you pick should prepare you for any licensing examinations that you will need to take in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a professional welder.

Welder Certification Alternatives

Apple River IL welder working on poleThere are several institutions that offer welding certifications, which test the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Many Apple River IL employers not only demand a certificate or degree from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a renowned organization such as the American Welding Society (AWS). Different certifications are offered dependent on the kind of work that the welder does. A few of the things that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to

  • Operate in compliance with specific codes
  • Work with specified metal thicknesses
  • Work with specific kinds of welds
  • Operate based on contract specifications

As already mentioned, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those calling for licensing, some additionally require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and experienced welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and confirm that the welding trade school you decide on preps you for certification if needed.

How to Pick a Welding Vocational School

Apple River IL welder working on carAfter you have chosen the credential you would like to earn, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can begin to assess schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of welding trade and technical schools in the Apple River IL area. That’s why it’s important to decide in advance what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have previously covered two important ones that many people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are very important qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the school you choose is going to provide the education that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are more factors you may need to consider before choosing a welder tech school.

Accreditation. It’s essential that the welding trade school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are two standard types 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, for example Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you pick is accredited, not just the school itself. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you receive a superior education, the accreditation can also help in getting financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable in Apple River IL for non-accredited schools. Finally, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.

Apprenticeship and Job Placement Programs. A large number of welder degree or diploma programs are provided in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will assist in placing you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Find out if the schools you are considering help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The schools should have relationships with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can rely upon for placements. These programs can help students find employment and establish associations within the Apple River IL welding community.

Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that begin an educational program and finish it. It’s important that the welder program you pick has a high completion rate. A low rate may indicate that the students who were in the program were unhappy with the training, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. 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 school has a good reputation within the industry, but also that it has the network of Apple River IL employer relationships to assist students obtain employment or apprenticeships upon graduation.

Modern Equipment and Facilities. Once you have decreased your choice of welder schools to 2 or 3 options, you should think out going to the campuses to inspect their facilities. Make sure that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are up-to-date. Specifically, 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 currently in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Apple River IL welding professional if they can give you a few suggestions.

School Location. Even though we already briefly discussed the importance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we should deal with. You should remember that unless you are able to relocate, the welder program you choose must be within driving distance of your Apple River IL home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides relocation expenses there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welder certificate programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, most likely 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 desire to work.

Smaller Classes. One-on-one instruction is important for a manual trade such as welding. It’s possible to get lost in larger classes and not receive much one-on-one training. Find out what the typical class size is for the welder schools you are looking at. Inquire if you can sit in on a few classes so that you can observe how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with several of the students and get their feedback. Similarly, speak with a few of the trainers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.

Convenient Class Schedules. Some 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 convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Apple River IL, verify that the schools you are looking at offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any due to illness, work or family circumstances.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Apple River IL?

Perhaps you live in the Apple River Illinois 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.

Apple River, Illinois

As of the census[7] of 2000, there were 379 people, 159 households, and 102 families residing in the village. The population density was 479.6 people per square mile (185.2/km²). There were 187 housing units at an average density of 236.6 per square mile (91.4/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 98.94% White, 0.79% African American, and 0.26% from two or more races.

There were 159 households out of which 30.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.9% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.8% were non-families. 32.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 2.93.

In the village, the population was spread out with 27.7% under the age of 18, 5.3% from 18 to 24, 30.3% from 25 to 44, 19.5% from 45 to 64, and 17.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 98.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.3 males.

Online Welding Training

pipe welder at work in Apple River ILWelding is truly a hands-on kind of trade, and therefore not extremely suitable for online training. However, there are a few online welding programs offered by various community colleges and technical schools in the greater Apple River IL area that can count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes mainly deal with such subjects as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to initiate their training and education. Nevertheless, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials unless you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be performed online. These skills need to 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 expertise or perhaps attain a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding degree or certificate program, be extremely careful and confirm that the larger part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.

Choose the Right Welding Vocational School Apple River IL

Choosing the best welding school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to start your new career. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to examine and compare among the programs you are reviewing. It’s a must that any welding training that you are evaluating includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and every student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom instruction should offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in duration and the type of credential offered, so you will have to decide what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Each program offers different possibilities for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to attend a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you choose is the ideal one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional welder in Apple River IL.

 

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