How to Become an Electrician in Semmes Alabama
The initial step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Semmes AL. But with numerous vocational schools to select from, just how do you approach making certain that you enroll in the right one? Particularly because there are so many points to examine. For example, some students will commence by looking for schools that are nearby their home. When they have located some that are within commuting range, they will choose the one with the most affordable tuition. Even though cost and location are of importance, they are not the only things that need to be evaluated. Also critical are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their graduation and job placement rates. These and additional qualifications should contribute toward your ultimate decision when selecting an electrician trade school. We will discuss that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about being an electrician and the educational choices that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Semmes AL
There are three general options to receive electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Semmes AL. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or obtain an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three options. Frequently these programs are offered together with an apprenticeship, which are mandated by the majority of states to be licensed or if you wish to earn certification. Bellow are brief descriptions of the three most prevalent programs available.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Alabama trade and technical schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards those who wish to join an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take two years to complete and are provided by Alabama junior or community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more extensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to begin their apprenticeship program.
As previously stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are available at some Alabama institutions, but are less favored at four years than the other shorter programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically 4 years be performed prior to licensing. For that reason, the majority of students are anxious to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Prerequisites
Electricians in Semmes AL can carry out a multitude of tasks, such as testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in the majority of states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but commonly around 4 to 5 years of practical experience is required in order to take the licensing exam. The exams usually test general knowledge and electrical theory, along with knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional way for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and can be acquired in numerous specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails three levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying agencies include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician vocational school that you pick not only delivers a strong educational foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing exams that you may be required to take in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Online Training Classes in Semmes AL
An option that you might have looked at is enrolling in an online electrician school to earn a certificate or degree. While online training programs have become more prevalent as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this case they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician schools require partial attendance on campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the remainder of the classes may be accessed online, distance learning can be a more practical choice for individuals that have limited time for schooling. And as a bonus many online degree programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on-campus competitors. Commuting costs from Semmes AL are also lessened and a portion of the study materials may be available online also. Each of these advantages can make electrician online trade schools more economical and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will discuss in our due diligence checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Vocational Schools
Now that you have made a decision to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to refine your training options. Considering that there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Semmes AL region, it’s essential to have a checklist of criteria that each school must satisfy. The initial two that we mentioned were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an degree online, then that must be a feature that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be critical when making your decision, there are additional variables that must be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to research prior to selecting an electrical trade school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician technical programs have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example electrical technology. Make certain that the Semmes AL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping make certain that you receive a superior education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, some states require that the electrician training course be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate might signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It may also suggest that the teachers were not competent to train the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of graduates, which may produce more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist Semmes AL grads obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many electrician trade programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical companies or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are comparing have working relationships with Semmes AL area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical tech you are working with regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Semmes AL electrical contractor if they can give you some tips. Also bear in mind that unless you can relocate, the school must be within commuting distance of your Semmes home. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there can be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between students and instructors. Speak with a few of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the teachers and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Semmes AL, verify that the programs you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Semmes AL?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Semmes AL area.
Semmes (pronounced /sɛmz/, locally /sɪmz/) is a city in western Mobile County, Alabama, in the Mobile metropolitan statistical area. Formerly an unincorporated community, voters in Semmes approved incorporation of a part of the community as the city of Semmes on August 17, 2010. After a statutory enumeration, or census, the town was officially declared incorporated on May 2, 2011, by Mobile County Probate Judge Don Davis. The statutory census indicated that the town has a population of 2,897 people. It covers 2,100 acres (850 ha). The current Mayor is David Baker. He is the 2nd Mayor of the city, succeeding Judy Hale.
Semmes is located at 30.778N, -88.259W. Elevation is 256 feet. The Semmes area is bounded to the North by the Citronelle area, bounded to the East by the cities of Saraland and Prichard, bounded to the South by the city of Mobile, and finally bounded to the West by Big Creek Lake.
Semmes is on the central Gulf Coast and has a subtropical climate, which consists of warm, wet winters and very hot, very humid summers. Semmes is also vulnerable to hurricanes, which the area frequently experiences.
Select the Ideal Electrical Vocational School near Semmes AL
Picking the best electrician training program will probably be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to assess and compare between the training programs you are reviewing. It’s a prerequisite that any electrical training program that you are reviewing includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be current and conform with industry standards. Courses differ in length and the type of credential provided, so you will need to determine what length of program and certificate or degree will best serve your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification as well. Probably the best means to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you pick is the ideal one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, the final outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Semmes AL.
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