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

How to Find the Right Welder Technical School near Wixom Michigan

Wixom MI welding school studentEnrolling in the right welder trade school near Wixom MI is an important first step to launching your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to select from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your options, how do you pick the right one? Most people begin by looking at the schools that are closest to their homes. Once they have identified those that are within driving distance, they are drawn toward the least expensive one. Yes, location and tuition cost are crucial issues when evaluating welder vocational 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 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.

Welder Certificate and Degree Programs

Wixom MI welder working on pipingThere are a number of options available to receive 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 available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered along with an apprenticeship program. Below are short summaries of the most typical welding programs offered in the Wixom MI.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually made available by technical and trade schools and take about one year to finish. They are more hands-on training in scope, designed largely to develop 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.

Some states and municipalities do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of future employment. If needed, the welding school you choose should prep you for any licensing exams that you will need to take in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a professional welder.

Welder Certification Choices

Wixom MI welder working on poleThere are a number of organizations that offer welding certifications, which evaluate the skill level and knowledge of those applying. A large number of Wixom MI employers not only demand a degree or certificate from an accredited welding program, but also certification from a highly regarded agency such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are offered based on the kind of work that the welder does. Some of the things that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to

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

As formerly mentioned, many states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those requiring licensing, a number additionally require certification for various kinds of work. Certification is also a way to demonstrate to employers that you are a highly skilled and qualified welder. So just as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and make certain that the welding technical school you select prepares you for certification if needed.

How to Choose a Welder Tech School

Wixom MI welder working on carWhen you have decided on the credential you want to attain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are many welding trade and vocational schools in the Wixom MI area. That’s why it’s important to decide up front what qualifications your selected school must have. We have previously discussed two significant ones that many people look at first, which are location and tuition cost. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that must be looked at. After all, the program you choose is going to provide the education that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So below are more factors you might want to consider before selecting a welding technical school.

Accreditation. It’s essential that the welding technical school you choose is accredited by either a national or a regional organization. There are 2 standard types of accreditation. The school may receive Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school offers, for instance 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 organization, such as the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you get a quality education, the accreditation might also help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable in Wixom MI for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or municipalities that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.

Apprenticeship and Job Assistance Programs. A large number of welder certificate or degree programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in a job or an apprenticeship upon graduation. Find out if the schools you are considering assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. The schools must have associations with local unions and various metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for referrals. These programs can help students find employment and develop associations within the Wixom MI welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that begin an educational program and complete it. It’s essential that the welding program you choose has a higher completion rate. A reduced rate may signify that the students who were 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 high job placement rate will not only verify that the program has an excellent reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of Wixom MI employer relationships to help students secure apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.

Modern Equipment and Facilities. After you have narrowed down your selection of welding schools to two or three options, you should consider visiting the campuses to look over their facilities. Verify that both the facilities and the equipment 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 unsure 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 Wixom MI welding contractor if they can give you a few suggestions.

School Location. Although we previously briefly covered the significance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we need to deal with. You should keep in mind that unless you have the ability to relocate, the welder school you choose needs to be within driving distance of your Wixom MI home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, besides relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welder degree programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school offers an apprenticeship or job placement program, most likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in an area or state where you subsequently will want to work.

Small Classes. One-on-one instruction is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be lost in bigger classes and not obtain much individualized training. Ask what the typical class size is for the welding programs you are reviewing. Ask if you can sit in on a few classes so that you can witness how much individual attention the students are getting. While there, speak with several of the students and get their opinions. Also, talk with a few of the instructors and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they hold.

Flexible Class Schedules. Lots of folks learn a new trade while still working at their current job. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are reviewing are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Wixom MI, confirm that the schools you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only enroll part-time, make certain that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make up classes if you you miss any because of work, illness or family responsibilities.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Wixom MI?

Perhaps you live in the Wixom 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.

Wixom, Michigan

Wixom is a city that lies in the borders of northwest Novi and southwest Commerce Township in Oakland County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The population was 13,498 at the 2010 census.[6] The city was home to the former Wixom Assembly Plant, which produced the Lincoln LS, the Ford Thunderbird, the Ford GT, and the Lincoln Town Car. The plant closed its doors on May 31, 2007.[7]

Wixom is home to several production and manufacturing businesses, including Trijicon, a leading manufacturer of night gun sights and night telescopic sights; Discraft, a leading manufacturer of flying discs for disc sports games like Ultimate; the U.S. headquarters of spark plug manufacturer NGK; Majic Window, the worlds largest distributor of fiberglass replacement home windows;[8] MAC Valves, Inc.,[9] a manufacturer of pneumatic valves used in the automotive and packaging industries, and Foster Specialty Floors[10] the state's largest and oldest sports flooring contractor.

The settlement of Wixom dates back to 1831. In the beginning Wixom was named Sibley's Corners after the first settler, 20 year old philanthropist Alonzo Sibley. Sibley settled in what is today called Commerce Township, where he purchased approximately 80 acres of land. Overtime, Sibley had established and purchased about 350 more acres of land. In 1837 Sibley donated a portion of his property for a local cemetery; which was called South Commerce Burial Ground; however, was later changed to Wixom Cemetery. Sibley then became the president of the cemetery association.

Online Welding Courses

pipe welder at work in Wixom MIWelding is very much a hands-on type of profession, and consequently not extremely compatible with training online. Having said that, there are a few online welding courses offered by specific community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Wixom MI area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes mainly deal with such topics as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a basis to begin their training and education. However, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials until you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be performed online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus setting or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for experienced welders that would like to advance their knowledge or perhaps obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding degree or certificate program, be extremely careful and make certain that the bulk of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.

Pick the Right Welding Vocational Program Wixom MI

Selecting the best welder school will probably be the most critical decision you will make to start your new profession. As we have addressed in this article, there are several things that you will need to examine and compare among the programs you are looking at. It’s a prerequisite that any welder training program that you are assessing includes a considerable amount of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world context, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Programs differ in length and the type of credential offered, so you will have to decide what length of program and credential will best satisfy your needs. Every training program provides different options for certification also. Probably The ideal approach to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Invest some time to monitor a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you decide on is the best one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end result will be a new career as a professional welder in Wixom MI.

 

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