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

How to Choose a Welding Training Program near Augusta Illinois

Augusta IL welding school studentChoosing the right welder technical school near Augusta IL is an important first step to beginning your new occupation 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 narrowed down your options, how do you select the best one? Most people begin by checking out the schools that are closest to their homes. Once they have located 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 sensible to create 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 Courses

Augusta IL welder working on pipingThere are multiple alternatives available to obtain training as a welder in a trade or vocational school. You can receive a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are offered in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available combined with an apprenticeship program. Below are short explanations of the most prevalent welding programs available in the Augusta IL.

  • Diploma and Certificate Programs are generally made available by trade and technical schools and take about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed primarily to teach welding skills. They can provide 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 well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still providing the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.

Many municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore make sure to check for your location of future employment. If required, the welder school you choose should prep you for any licensing examinations that you will have to take in addition to furnishing the appropriate training to become a professional welder.

Welding Certification Options

Augusta IL welder working on poleThere are multiple institutions that provide welder certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Many Augusta IL employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a renowned agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered based on the type of work that the welder does. A few of the skills that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to

  • Work in compliance with specific codes
  • Work with specific metal thicknesses
  • Work with specific types of welds
  • Operate in compliance with contract specifications

As previously mentioned, many cities, states or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those calling for licensing, a number also require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are an exceptionally skilled and experienced welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and verify that the welder vocational school you choose prepares you for certification as needed.

How to Decide on a Welder Technical Program

Augusta IL welder working on carOnce you have decided on the credential you would like to earn, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to evaluate schools. As you can imagine, there are numerous welding trade and technical schools in the Augusta IL area. That’s why it’s important to establish in advance what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have already discussed 2 important ones that most people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are very important qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the school you pick is going to provide the training that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are some additional factors you may need to evaluate before picking a welding vocational school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder technical school you select is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are two standard types of accreditation. The school may receive Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a specific program the school has, such as Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you pick is accredited, not just the school itself. 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 ensure that you get an excellent education, the accreditation might also help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often not offered in Augusta IL 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. Numerous welding degree or certificate programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Various 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 must have relationships with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. More established schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and develop associations within the Augusta IL welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that enroll in an academic program and finish it. It’s important that the welding program you select has a high completion rate. A reduced rate could indicate that the students who enrolled in the program were dissatisfied with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also an indication of the quality 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 Augusta IL employer relationships to help students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. After you have decreased your choice of welding programs to two or three possibilities, you should consider going to the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Verify that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be trained on are up-to-date. In particular, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be using in the field. If you are not sure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Augusta IL welding contractor if they can give you some tips.

School Location. Even though we already briefly talked about the relevance of location, there are a few additional issues that we should deal with. You should keep in mind that unless you have the ability to relocate, the welding school you pick must be within commuting distance of your Augusta IL home. If you do decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welding diploma programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, 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 needs to be in an area or state where you subsequently will want to work.

Small Classes. Individualized instruction is essential for a manual trade such as welding. It’s possible to get lost in larger classes and not receive much individualized training. Ask what the usual class size is for the welding programs you are looking at. Ask if you can sit in on some classes so that you can witness how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with several of the students and get their evaluations. Also, talk to a couple of the instructors and find out what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they have earned.

Convenient Class Scheduling. Many people learn a new trade while still working at their current job. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are looking at are convenient enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Augusta IL, make sure that the schools you are reviewing offer those choices. If you can only enroll part-time, verify that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Also, check to see what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family circumstances.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Augusta IL?

Perhaps you live in the Augusta 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.

Augusta, Illinois

Augusta is located in southeastern Hancock County at 40°13′51″N 90°57′3″W / 40.23083°N 90.95083°W / 40.23083; -90.95083 (40.230946, -90.950741).[5]Illinois Route 61 passes through the village, leaving to the west as Main Street and to the north as Center Street; Bowen is 6 miles (10 km) to the west, and Plymouth is 5 miles (8 km) to the north. Augusta's Main Street continues east from the center of town as Illinois Route 101, leading 3 miles (5 km) to Weinberg-King State Park and 15 miles (24 km) to Littleton.

On September 18, 1858, soon-to-be President Abraham Lincoln visited Augusta, where he gave a speech and stayed at the home of Elder James Stark. Previously, Lincoln's opponent in the historic Lincoln–Douglas debates, Stephen A. Douglas, had spoken in Augusta. In 1864, Congressman James Garfield (the future president) spoke in Augusta on behalf of Lincoln. Other notable visitors include William McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt in the fall of 1900. Only Roosevelt gave a short speech on his trip through Augusta during the campaign.

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 657 people, 296 households, and 179 families residing in the village. The population density was 921.1 people per square mile (357.3/km²). There were 330 housing units at an average density of 462.7 per square mile (179.5/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 99.70% White, and 0.30% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.76% of the population.

Online Welding Training

pipe welder at work in Augusta ILWelding is truly a hands-on kind of vocation, and therefore not extremely compatible with training online. Having said that, there are some online welding programs offered by various community colleges and trade schools in the greater Augusta IL area that can be credited toward a degree or certificate program. These classes primarily cover such topics as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a basis to initiate their training and education. Nevertheless, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials until you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be accomplished online. These skills have 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 knowledge or possibly obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should discover 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 Right Welding Vocational Program Augusta IL

Picking the right welder training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to launch your new career. As we have discussed in this article, there are many things that you will need to examine and compare between the programs you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any welding school that you are considering includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes should be small in size and each student should have their personal welding machine to train with. Classroom education should provide a real-world frame of reference, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs vary in length and the type of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Each training program provides different options for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and talk with the faculty and students. Invest some time to attend some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you choose is the best one for you. With the proper training, effort and dedication, the end result will be a new career as a professional welder in Augusta IL.

 

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