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Welding Schools Near Me | How to Become a Welder – Woods Hole MA

How to Choose a Welder Trade School near Woods Hole Massachusetts

Woods Hole MA welding school studentSelecting the ideal welder trade school near Woods Hole MA is an important first step to starting your new occupation as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to pick from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more notably, once you have narrowed down your options, how do you select the best one? Most people start by looking at the schools that are nearest to their residences. When they have found those that are within commuting distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and the cost of tuition are necessary issues when reviewing welding trade schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a vocational school to become a welder, it’s sensible to establish 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.

Welder Degree and Certificate Training

Woods Hole MA welder working on pipingThere are several alternatives available to obtain training as a welder in a technical or trade school. You can obtain a a certificate, a diploma 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 in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are short descriptions of the most prevalent welding programs offered in the Woods Hole MA.

  • Certificate and Diploma Programs are normally made available by technical and trade schools and require about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, fashioned primarily to develop welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for experienced welders.
  • Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish 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 municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, therefore be sure to find out for your location of future employment. As needed, the welding school you select should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will have to take in addition to furnishing the appropriate training to become a qualified welder.

Welder Certification Choices

Woods Hole MA welder working on poleThere are several organizations that offer welding certifications, which test the knowledge and skill level of those applying. Numerous Woods Hole MA employers not only demand a degree or certificate from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a renowned agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A variety of certifications are available based upon the type of work that the welder performs. Some of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to

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

As already stated, some states, cities or local municipalities have licensing mandates for welders. Of those mandating licensing, some also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to employers that you are an extremely skilled and qualified welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and verify that the welding trade school you choose prepares you for certification if needed.

How to Choose a Welder Tech School

Woods Hole MA welder working on carAs soon as you have chosen the credential you would like to attain, a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to evaluate schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of welder trade and vocational schools in the Woods Hole MA area. That’s why it’s important to decide in advance what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have previously covered 2 significant ones that most people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As stated, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that need to be considered. After all, the school you choose is going to furnish the training that will be the foundation of your new vocation as a welder. So below are some additional factors you might want to consider before picking a welder technical school.

Accreditation. It’s very important that the welding vocational school you decide on is accredited by either a national or a regional agency. There are two standard types of accreditation. The school may earn Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on an individual program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So make sure that the program you pick is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, 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 ensure that you get an excellent education, the accreditation may also assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not offered in Woods Hole MA for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or local governments that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited as well.

Apprenticeship and Job Assistance Programs. A large number of welding diploma or degree programs are offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Various other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Ask if the schools you are reviewing assist in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The 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 more substantial network of graduates that they can utilize for referrals. These programs can help students find employment and develop associations within the Woods Hole MA welding community.

Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that start an educational program and complete it. It’s crucial that the welder school you choose has a higher completion rate. A reduced rate could indicate that the students who were in the program were dissatisfied with the instruction, the instructors, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the quality of training. A higher job placement rate will not only confirm that the program has an excellent reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Woods Hole MA employer relationships to assist students obtain employment or apprenticeships after graduation.

Modern Facilities and Equipment. After you have decreased your selection of welder schools to 2 or 3 possibilities, you should think out 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. Specifically, the training equipment should be similar to what you will be working with on the job. If you are unsure 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 Woods Hole MA welding contractor if they can give you some pointers.

School Location. Even though we already briefly covered the importance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we need to cover. You should keep in mind that unless you have the ability to move, the welding program you pick needs to be within driving distance of your Woods Hole MA home. If you do decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides moving costs there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially true for welder diploma 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 regional community. So the location of the school needs to be in a region or state where you subsequently will want to work.

Smaller Classes. Personalized instruction is important for a manual trade such as welding. It’s possible to get lost in bigger classes and not receive much one-on-one training. Find out what the typical class size is for the welding schools you are looking at. Inquire if you can sit in on a couple of classes so that you can observe just how much individual attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with several 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 have earned.

Flexible Class Schedules. Some people learn a new profession while still working at their current job. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are considering are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Woods Hole MA, make sure that the schools you are assessing offer those choices. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the policy is to make up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.

Will You Be Attending Welding School Near Woods Hole MA?

Perhaps you live in the Woods Hole Massachusetts 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.

Woods Hole, Massachusetts

Woods Hole is a census-designated place in the town of Falmouth in Barnstable County, Massachusetts, United States. It lies at the extreme southwest corner of Cape Cod, near Martha's Vineyard and the Elizabeth Islands. The population was 781 at the 2010 census.[1]

It is the site of several famous marine science institutions, including Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the Marine Biological Laboratory, the Woods Hole Research Center, NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Science Center (which started the Woods Hole scientific community in 1871), the Woods Hole Science Aquarium, a USGS coastal and marine geology center, and the home campus of the Sea Education Association. It is also the site of United States Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England (formerly USCG Group Woods Hole),[2] the Nobska Light lighthouse, and the terminus of the Steamship Authority ferry route between Cape Cod and the island of Martha's Vineyard.

Historically, Woods Hole included one of the few good harbors (along with Hyannis) on the southern side of Cape Cod (i.e. Great Harbor, contained by Penzance Point). The community became a center for whaling, shipping, and fishing, prior to its dominance today by tourism and marine research. At the end of the nineteenth century, Woods Hole was the home of the Pacific Guano Company, which produced fertilizer from guano imported from islands in the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean, and the coast of South Carolina. After the firm went bankrupt in 1889, Long Neck–the peninsula on which their factory was located–was renamed Penzance Point and was developed with Shingle-Style summer homes for bankers and lawyers from New York and Boston. Notable property owners on Penzance Point at the beginning of the twentieth century included Seward Prosser of New York's Bankers Trust Company; Francis Bartow, a partner in J. P. Morgan and Company; Joseph Lee, a partner in Lee, Higginson & Co.; and Franklin A. Park, an executive of Singer Sewing Machine. Other notable businessmen established homes on Gansett Point, Nobska Point, and at Quissett Harbor, further from the village center.

Online Welding Degree and Certificate Programs

pipe welder at work in Woods Hole MAWelding is truly a hands-on type of trade, and consequently not very compatible with training online. Even so, there are a small number of online welding programs offered by certain community colleges and vocational schools in the greater Woods Hole MA area that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes primarily deal with such topics as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help provide a beginner a foundation to begin their training and education. However, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or use welding materials unless you actually do it. Clearly that can’t be performed 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 knowledge or perhaps obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very cautious and make certain that the larger part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.

Find the Right Welding Technical School Woods Hole MA

Choosing the best welder training program will probably be the most critical decision you will make to start your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are many factors that you will need to assess and compare between the programs you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any welder training that you are considering includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their own welding machine to train with. Classroom instruction should provide a real-world context, and the course of study should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses differ in duration and the type of credential provided, so you will need to determine what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every training program provides unique possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Invest some time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the training program you select 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 Woods Hole MA.

 

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