How to Become an Electrician in Ellijay Georgia
The initial step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Ellijay GA. But with so many vocational schools to pick from, just how do you tackle making certain that you enroll in the ideal one? Particularly since there are so many factors to evaluate. For example, some potential students will start by searching for schools that are close to their home. When they have identified several that are within commuting range, they will choose the one with the lowest tuition. Even though cost and location are significant, they are not the only factors that should be evaluated. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, along with their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifiers should help mold your final decision when choosing an electrician training school. We will talk about that checklist in more 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 Diploma, Certificate and Degree Programs near Ellijay GA
There are multiple ways to obtain electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Ellijay GA. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain schools, but are not as prevalent as the other three alternatives. In many cases these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship, which are required by the majority of states in order to become licensed or if you wish to earn certification. Bellow are brief descriptions of the 3 most common programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally offered by Georgia trade and technical schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a good foundation and are geared towards individuals who want to enter an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take 2 years to finish and are offered by Georgia community colleges, commonly as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at certain Georgia colleges, but are less preferred at four years than the other briefer programs. Many states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and more typically four years be performed before licensing. Therefore, many students are eager to commence their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not a component of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Criteria
Electricians in Ellijay GA can carry out a multitude of tasks, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in houses and buildings are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but generally around four to five years of practical experience is needed before taking the licensing exam. The exams typically test general knowledge and electrical theory, along with knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also a voluntary way for an electrician to identify her or himself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be acquired in several specializations, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification process in most cases involves 3 levels of proficiency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician vocational school that you choose not only provides a solid educational foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you may be required to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Training Classes in Ellijay GA
An option that you may have contemplated is choosing an electrician online program to earn a certificate or degree. Although online schools are becoming more popular as a way of attending class without the need for travel, in this case they are not entirely internet based. Just about all electrician schools require some attendance on-campus to receive practical hands-on training. But since the remainder of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning may be a more convenient choice for students that have minimal time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their on campus alternatives. Commuting costs from Ellijay GA are also minimized and a portion of the study materials can be accessed on line as well. Each of these advantages can make online electrician tech schools more economical and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will discuss in our questions to ask checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
Now that you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to focus your school options. Because there are numerous electrician trade and vocational schools in the Ellijay GA area, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each school must meet. The initial 2 that we mentioned were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be an option that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your decision, there are additional factors that need to be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those added qualifications that you will need to assess prior to enrolling in an electrical tech school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician trade programs have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, such as electrical technology. Make sure that the Ellijay GA program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you acquire a quality education, it can help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Additionally, some states require that the electrician training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the course. A low completion rate might indicate that students were disappointed with the program and quit. It might also signify that the instructors were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of graduates, which can mean more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Ellijay GA students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician vocational programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrician contractors or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have working partnerships with Ellijay GA area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical tech you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Ellijay GA electrical contracting company if they can give you some pointers. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Ellijay residence. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there can be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few 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 opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to some of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Ellijay GA, verify that the programs you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Ellijay GA?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Ellijay GA area.
Gilmer County was cut from Cherokee County in 1832, and Ellijay became the county seat in 1834. Ellijay existed as a remote mountain community until the Marietta and Northern Georgia Railroad (later the L & N) arrived in 1884. This prompted something of a boom in the timber industry, but the area remained relatively isolated until the Zell Miller Mountain Parkway (Georgia 515, named for Georgia governor and U.S. senator Zell Miller) was completed in 1991.
Ellijay is located at the center of Gilmer County, at 34°41'41" north, 84°29'1" west (34.694656, -84.483566). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 3.6 square miles (9.2 km2), all land. It is situated at the confluence of the Ellijay and Cartecay rivers, forming the Coosawattee River, part of the Oostanaula/Coosa/Alabama River watershed. It is bordered to the east and south by the city of East Ellijay.
U.S. Route 76 bypasses the city center to the south and east. It leads west 24 miles (39 km) to Chatsworth and northeast 16 miles (26 km) to Blue Ridge. Georgia State Route 52 (Chatsworth Highway) also leads 24 miles (39 km) to Chatsworth, taking a more northerly route over Cohutta Mountain. Georgia State Route 515, the Zell Miller Mountain Parkway, leads northeast with US 76 to Blue Ridge and south 20 miles (32 km) to Jasper. Downtown Atlanta is 77 miles (124 km) to the south.
Enroll in the Ideal Electrical Tech School near Ellijay GA
Picking the right electrical trade school will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several things that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are reviewing. It’s a necessity that any electrical training that you are assessing includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and every student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom education should offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each training program provides unique options for certification as well. Perhaps the best means to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Invest some time to sit in on a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you choose is the best one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the final result will be a new career as a professional electrician in Ellijay GA.
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