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

How to Pick a Welding Technical School near Donovan Illinois

Donovan IL welding school studentChoosing the right welder vocational school near Donovan IL is an important first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have fine tuned your alternatives, how do you select the best one? A number of prospective students start by reviewing the schools that are closest to their homes. Once they have located those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are crucial considerations when evaluating welding trade schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before starting 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 explore our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.

Welding Certificate and Degree Programs

Donovan IL welder working on pipingThere are multiple options available to obtain training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can receive a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, 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 descriptions of the most typical welding programs offered in the Donovan IL.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally made available by technical and trade schools and require about one year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed primarily to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or supplemental skills for experienced welders.
  • Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to complete and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.

A number of states and municipalities do have licensing requirements for welders, so make sure to check for your location of potential employment. If required, the welder school you choose should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will have to take in addition to supplying the appropriate training to become a professional welder.

Welder Certification Options

Donovan IL welder working on poleThere are a number of organizations that offer welder certifications, which assess the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Many Donovan IL employers not only demand a certificate or degree from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a highly regarded agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available dependent on the kind of work that the welder performs. Some of the things that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to

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

As earlier stated, some cities, states or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, a number additionally require certification for different kinds 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, check the requirements for your location and make sure that the welder technical school you select readies you for certification as needed.

How to Decide on a Welder Tech School

Donovan IL welder working on carOnce you have chosen the credential you want to earn, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to assess schools. As you can imagine, there are many welding trade and technical schools in the Donovan IL area. That’s why it’s essential to determine up front what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have previously covered two important ones that most people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As mentioned, although they are very important qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the program you select is going to provide the education that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So following are more factors you may need to evaluate before choosing a welder vocational school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder vocational school you choose is accredited by either a national or a regional agency. There are two 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 offers, such as Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you choose is accredited, not just the school itself. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping make sure that you receive a quality education, the accreditation might also help in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available in Donovan IL for non-accredited schools. Finally, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited also.

Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. Many welder certificate or degree programs are provided combined 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 assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The schools should have partnerships 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 assist students in finding employment and establish associations within the Donovan IL welding community.

Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that enroll in an academic program and complete it. It’s important that the welder school you pick has a high completion rate. A lower rate could indicate that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the training, the instructors, 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 affirm that the program has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Donovan IL contacts to assist students obtain apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.

Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have decreased your selection of welding programs to two or three possibilities, 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 taught on are modern. Specifically, 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, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Donovan IL welding professional if they can give you some pointers.

School Location. Although we already briefly covered the importance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we should address. You should bear in mind that unless you can relocate, the welding program you pick must be within commuting distance of your Donovan IL home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving expenses there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, 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 ultimately will desire to work.

Small Classes. Individualized training is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get lost in larger classes and not get much individualized instruction. Ask what the typical class size is for the welding programs you are considering. Ask if you can attend a few classes so that you can experience just how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with some of the students and get their evaluations. Similarly, talk to some of the trainers and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.

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

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Donovan IL?

Perhaps you live in the Donovan 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.

Donovan, Illinois

Donovan is located in northeastern Iroquois County at 40°53′3″N 87°36′57″W / 40.88417°N 87.61583°W / 40.88417; -87.61583 (40.884031, -87.615746).[7]U.S. Route 52 passes through the village, leading west and north 30 miles (48 km) to Kankakee and southeast 14 miles (23 km) to Kentland, Indiana.

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 351 people, 132 households, and 97 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,127.4 people per square mile (437.2/km²). There were 142 housing units at an average density of 456.1 per square mile (176.9/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 96.30% White, 0.85% African American, 0.85% Native American, 1.42% from other races, and 0.57% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.13% of the population.

There were 132 households out of which 37.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.1% were married couples living together, 12.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.5% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.66 and the average family size was 3.10.

Online Welding Classes

pipe welder at work in Donovan ILWelding is very much a hands-on kind of profession, and consequently not very compatible with online training. Having said that, there are a few online welding programs offered by specific community colleges and trade schools in the greater Donovan IL area that can count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes primarily deal with such subjects as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a foundation to initiate their education and training. However, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials unless you actually do it. Naturally that can’t be performed online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that would like to advance their expertise or possibly earn a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful and verify that the majority of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Select the Ideal Welding Technical School Donovan IL

Selecting the right welder school will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any welding training program that you are examining includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will have to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best satisfy your needs. Each training program offers unique possibilities for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you choose is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the end outcome will be a new career as a professional welder in Donovan IL.

 

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