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

How to Select a Welding Certification Course near Durand Illinois

Durand IL welding school studentLocating the right welding vocational school near Durand IL is an essential first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to select 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? Many people begin by checking out the schools that are closest to their residences. When they have found those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the least costly one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary concerns 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 initiating your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s prudent to develop a list of qualifications that your chosen school must have. But before we explore our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.

Welder Degree and Certificate Programs

Durand IL welder working on pipingThere are several alternatives available to get training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can earn a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are offered in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced courses than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available along with an apprenticeship program. Below are brief explanations of the most typical welding programs available in the Durand IL.

  • Diploma and Certificate Programs are normally made available by trade and technical schools and require about a year to finish. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed mainly 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 two years to complete and are usually offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology furnishes 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, therefore be sure to check for your location of future employment. If required, the welding school you choose should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will need to take in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a qualified welder.

Welding Certification Options

Durand IL welder working on poleThere are a number of organizations that provide welder certifications, which assess the knowledge and skill level of those applying. A large number of Durand IL employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a renowned agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A variety of certifications are available based on the kind of work that the welder does. A few of the skills that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to

  • Work in compliance with specific codes
  • Work with certain metal thicknesses
  • Work with specific kinds of welds
  • Work in compliance with contract specifications

As already stated, some states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those mandating licensing, some also require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are a highly skilled and knowledgeable welder. So similarly as with licensing, look into the requirements for your location and confirm that the welder tech school you choose readies you for certification if needed.

How to Choose a Welding Tech Program

Durand IL welder working on carAfter you have chosen the credential you want to attain, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can begin to evaluate schools. As you can imagine, there are a large number of welding vocational and trade schools in the Durand IL area. That’s why it’s important to decide up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have already covered a couple of significant ones that most people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that should be considered. After all, the program you select is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are more factors you may need to evaluate before selecting a welder technical school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welder technical school you decide on is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are 2 basic 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, such as Welding Technology. So verify that the program you select is accredited, not just the school itself. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, the accreditation might also assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases not offered in Durand IL for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.

Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of welding certificate or degree programs are provided in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job upon graduation. Ask if the schools you are looking at help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools must have associations with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can place their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can help students find employment and develop relationships within the Durand IL welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that start an instructional program and complete it. It’s important that the welding program you choose has a high completion rate. A lower rate could signify that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the training, the instructors, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also an indication of the caliber of training. A high job placement rate will not only confirm that the program has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of Durand IL contacts to help students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Up-to-date Equipment and Facilities. Once you have narrowed down your selection of welding programs to two or three options, you should consider going to the campuses to inspect their facilities. Verify that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be taught on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with 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. If not, ask a local Durand IL welding professional if they can give you a few tips.

School Location. Even though we previously briefly talked about the relevance of location, there are a few additional points that we should address. You should bear in mind that unless you have the ability to move, the welder program you choose needs to be within driving distance of your Durand IL home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, apart from moving costs there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welder degree programs offered by community colleges. Furthermore, if the school provides 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 wish to work.

Smaller Classes. One-on-one training is important for a manual trade such as welding. It’s possible to get overlooked in larger classes and not obtain much individualized training. Ask what the typical class size is for the welding schools you are looking at. Inquire if you can attend a couple of classes so that you can witness just how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, talk with some of the students and get their evaluations. Similarly, talk with a couple of the teachers 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 profession while still employed at their present job. Check to see that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Durand IL, make sure that the schools you are considering provide those alternatives. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, confirm that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out 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 Durand IL?

Perhaps you live in the Durand 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.

Durand, Illinois

Durand is a village in Winnebago County, Illinois, United States. It is part of the Rockford, Illinois Metropolitan Statistical Area The population was 1,443 at the 2010 census, up from 1,081 in 2000.

Its township's beginnings initiated originally in a no longer existing settlement called Elton, an area South of Durand and including parts of the Pecatonica and Rock Run townships and settled in 1835 by Nelson Salisbury, Harvey Lower, and Scott Robb. They and nine other families settled the Southwest portion of modern Durand, Pecatonica, and Rock Run area. Durand gave birth to Illinois' first tax-supported volunteer fire department. Since its settlement, Durand has been prone to devastating fires.[4] Durand's early flourishings were closely linked to the development of the Racine-Mississippi Railroad later absorbed into Western Union.[5] The line reached Durand in 1857, en route to Freeport, paving the shift from the Elton community into modern Durand and deriving its name from the railroad's first president, H.S. Durand. At this time, Durand saw the beginning of its prosperity which entailed the demise of the Elton settlement.[6]

Durand is located at 42°26′2″N 89°19′41″W / 42.43389°N 89.32806°W / 42.43389; -89.32806 (42.433928, -89.328007).[7] It is located 14 miles by road north of US Route 20 on Illinois Route 70. Illinois Route 75 also runs south of town.

Online Welding Classes

pipe welder at work in Durand ILWelding is very much a manual kind of trade, and for that reason not extremely compatible with online training. Even so, there are a small number of online welding courses offered by specific community colleges and technical schools in the greater Durand IL area that can be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These classes mainly cover such topics as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a foundation to begin 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 done online. These skills have to be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for experienced welders that desire to advance their knowledge or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding certificate or degree program, be very careful and make certain that the majority of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.

Choose the Right Welding Vocational Program Durand IL

Choosing the right welding school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to start your new profession. As we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to examine and compare between the schools you are reviewing. It’s a must that any welding school that you are considering includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be small in size and every student should have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom instruction needs to offer a real-world context, and the curriculum should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will have to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best satisfy your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Take the time to attend a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you decide on is the best one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the final outcome will be a new trade as a professional welder in Durand IL.

 

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