Welding Schools Near Me | How to Become a Welder – South Lyon MI

How to Enroll In a Welding Certification Course near South Lyon Michigan

South Lyon MI welding school studentSelecting the ideal welder school near South Lyon MI is an essential first step to beginning your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to pick from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have narrowed down your options, how do you pick the best one? A number of people begin by reviewing the schools that are closest to their residences. Once they have located those that are within commuting distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are important issues when evaluating welding trade schools, but they are not the only ones. Other considerations include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before starting your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s prudent 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

South Lyon MI welder working on pipingThere are a number of options to obtain 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 programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available along with an apprenticeship program. Following are short explanations of the most common welding programs available in the South Lyon MI.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are normally offered by technical and trade schools and take about one year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, fashioned largely to develop 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 2 years to complete and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more extensive education than the certificate or diploma while still supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter the workforce.

A number of municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, so be sure to find out for your location of potential employment. As needed, the welder school you pick should ready you for any licensing examinations that you will need to pass in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a professional welder.

Welder Certification Choices

South Lyon MI welder working on poleThere are several organizations that provide welding certifications, which test the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Numerous South Lyon MI employers not only require a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a respected organization like the American Welding Society (AWS). Different certifications are offered based on the type of work that the welder performs. Some 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 certain types of welds
  • Operate in compliance with contract specifications

As already mentioned, various cities, states or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those calling for licensing, many also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to employers that you are a highly skilled and qualified welder. So just as with licensing, check the requirements for your local area and make sure that the welder trade school you choose prepares you for certification if needed.

How to Decide on a Welding Trade School

South Lyon MI welder working on carWhen you have chosen the credential you want to obtain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to compare schools. As you probably know, there are numerous welding vocational and trade schools in the South Lyon MI area. That’s why it’s important to establish up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have already discussed two important ones that many people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As stated, although they are very important qualifiers, they are not the only ones that should be looked at. After all, the school you select is going to provide the training that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So following are some additional factors you might need to consider before choosing a welding tech school.

Accreditation. It’s essential that the welder trade school you select is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are 2 standard kinds of accreditation. The school may receive Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So make certain that the program you select is accredited, not just the school alone. Additionally, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, like the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you get a superior education, the accreditation may also help in getting financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable in South Lyon MI for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.

Apprenticeship and Job Placement Programs. Many welder degree or certificate programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship upon graduation. Ask if the schools you are reviewing help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The schools must have partnerships with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and develop relationships within the South Lyon MI welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that start an academic program and finish it. It’s important that the welding program you select has a high completion rate. A lower rate could signify that the students who enrolled in the program were unhappy with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also an indication of the caliber 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 South Lyon MI employer relationships to assist students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Up-to-date Facilities and Equipment. After you have decreased your choice of welder schools to 2 or 3 options, you should consider going to the campuses to look over their facilities. Verify that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be working with in the field. If you are not sure what to look for, and are already in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local South Lyon MI welding contractor if they can give you some suggestions.

School Location. Although we previously briefly covered the relevance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we need to deal with. You should remember that unless you are able to relocate, the welder program you pick must be within commuting distance of your South Lyon MI home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, besides relocation expenses there might be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welder degree programs offered by community colleges. Furthermore, if the school offers a job placement or apprenticeship program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in a region or state where you ultimately will wish to work.

Smaller Classes. Individualized training is essential for a manual trade such as welding. It’s easy to be overlooked in bigger classes and not obtain much one-on-one training. Ask what the average class size is for the welder schools you are considering. Ask if you can attend a couple of classes so that you can witness how much personal attention the students are getting. While there, speak with some of the students and get their feedback. Also, talk to a couple of the instructors and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they have earned.

Flexible Class Schedules. Many people learn a new trade while still working at their present job. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near South Lyon MI, make certain that the schools you are looking at offer those alternatives. If you can only attend part-time, confirm that the school you pick offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes if you you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near South Lyon MI?

Perhaps you live in the South Lyon Michigan 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.

South Lyon, Michigan

South Lyon is a city in Southwestern Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan, in Metro Detroit. The population was 11,327 at the 2010 census.[6] The city is part of the South Lyon-Howell-Brighton Urban Area, which had a population of 106,139 according to the 2000 census. South Lyon is located in Oakland County's Lyon Township, near the Livingston County and Washtenaw County lines. The city is 19 miles (31 km) north of Ann Arbor, 45 miles (72 km) west of Detroit and 58 miles (93 km) east of Lansing.

South Lyon was founded in 1832 and was called Thompson's Corners. In the same year, the surrounding township was named Lyon for Lucius Lyon, a member of the State Legislature. The village was given a name for its location within the township. South Lyon was incorporated as a village in 1873 and as a city in 1930[7]

Three rail lines once passed through South Lyon. In the summer of 1871, the Detroit, Lansing and Northern was built west from Plymouth on the way to Lansing and Ionia. In 1880, the predessor to the Ann Arbor Railroad built a line into town from Ann Arbor. The goal of this line was to continue on towards Pontiac but that did not occur under the original owners. The line was pulled up around 1890. In 1883 the Grand Trunk built their Jackson Branch from Pontiac to Jackson, which crossed the Pere Marquette at South Lyon. The GTW branch line continued to serve South Lyon until the early 1980s. The branch line is now a paved bicycle trail through town and Reynold Sweet Parkway follows the original route. Today, South Lyon hosts the CSX main line from Detroit to Grand Rapids, and a passing track is located there.

Online Welder Classes

pipe welder at work in South Lyon MIWelding is very much a hands-on type of profession, and for that reason not extremely suitable for training online. Having said that, there are a small number of online welding classes offered by certain community colleges and vocational schools in the greater South Lyon MI area that can count toward a degree or certificate program. These classes mainly deal with such topics as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a foundation to initiate their training and education. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials unless you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be accomplished online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that desire to advance their expertise or perhaps earn a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very cautious and make certain that the majority of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Select the Best Welding Tech School South Lyon MI

Picking the best welder training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new career. As we have covered in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are considering. It’s a necessity that any welding training program that you are considering includes a lot of hands-on training. Classes need to be smaller in size and every student must have their own welding machine to train on. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses differ in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Each program offers unique possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best approach to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you choose is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new trade as a professional welder in South Lyon MI.

 

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