How to Become an Electrician in Wahiawa Hawaii
The first step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Wahiawa HI. But with so many vocational schools to choose from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the ideal one? Particularly because there are so many points to consider. For example, some potential students will start by searching for schools that are close to their home. Once they have found a few that are within driving distance, they will select the one with the most affordable tuition. Even though cost and location are important, they are not the only factors that should be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, along with their graduation and job placement rates. These and additional qualifications should contribute toward your final decision when choosing an electrician school. We will cover that checklist in more detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the instructional options that are available.
Electrician Diploma, Certificate and Degree Programs near Wahiawa HI
There are three general options to receive electrician training in a technical or vocational school near Wahiawa HI. You can enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three alternatives. Frequently these programs are made available combined with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states in order to become licensed or if you would like to earn certification. Bellow are short explanations of the 3 most prevalent programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are typically offered by Hawaii trade and technical schools and require approximately a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards students who want to enter an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require two years to finish and are offered by Hawaii junior or community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They provide a more well-rounded education while providing the foundation that prepares students to begin their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are accessible at some Hawaii institutions, but are less preferred at four years than the other shorter programs. Many states require that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases four years be completed prior to licensing. For that reason, most students are eager to begin their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their academic program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Requirements
Electricians in Wahiawa HI can undertake a wide range of duties, such as installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and ensuring that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but normally about 4 to 5 years of practical experience is required before taking the licensing examination. The exams usually assess general knowledge and electrical theory, in addition to knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional method for an electrician to distinguish him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be earned in many specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails 3 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) as well as the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s crucial that the electrician tech school that you pick not only provides a strong educational foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might need to pass in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Training Classes in Wahiawa HI
An option that you might have looked at is selecting an online electrician school to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online training programs have become more accepted as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this instance they are not entirely internet based. Virtually all electrician schools require partial attendance on-campus to get practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes may be attended online, internet learning can be a more convenient choice for students that have minimal time for education. And as an added benefit numerous online degree programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on campus competitors. Travelling expenses from Wahiawa HI are also lessened and a portion of the study materials may be accessed on line also. Each of these benefits can make electrician online vocational schools more economical and accessible. And many are fully accredited, which we will discuss in our due diligence checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Training Schools
Once you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to narrow down your school options. Considering that there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Wahiawa HI area, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must satisfy. The initial 2 that we discussed were location and the cost of tuition. If you have an interest in earning an degree online, then that must be a feature that your final school offers. And while all three qualifiers may be critical when making your decision, there are additional variables that need to be considered also. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to analyze before enrolling in an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician trade programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Make certain that the Wahiawa HI program 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 obtain an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, many states require that the electrician training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician schools you are reviewing 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 could suggest that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It may also mean that the teachers were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s similarly essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Wahiawa HI students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician vocational programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrician contractors or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with Wahiawa HI area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing practical training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical technician you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Wahiawa HI electrical contracting company if they can provide some tips. Also bear in mind that unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Wahiawa home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there may be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk with some of the students and get their comments regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to a few of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Wahiawa HI, check that the schools you are looking at provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Wahiawa HI?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Wahiawa HI area.
Wahiawa (Hawaiian: Wahiawā) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Honolulu County, Hawaii, United States, on the island of Oahu. It is located in the Wahiawa District, on the plateau or "central valley" between the two volcanic mountains that comprise the island. In Hawaiian, wahi a wā means "place of noise", perhaps a reference to the fact that heavy surf on the North Shore could be heard from here, or to the sounds of the ancient military training exercises conducted on these plains. The population was 17,821 at the 2010 census.
Lakes and reservoirs are rare in Hawaii, and Wahiawa is at once unique in being surrounded on three sides by Lake Wilson (also known as Wahiawa Reservoir or Kaukonahua). The town must be accessed by either of two bridges on Kamehameha Highway (State Rte. 80) across the narrow north and south arms of the reservoir. Outside of the reservoir, the town used to be surrounded by military bases and agricultural fields, but development is making its way up from the increasingly urbanized southern portion of the central plain. Still, there are significant U.S. Army facilities here, including Schofield Barracks, Wheeler Army Airfield, and East Range, an Army training area extending into the hills south and east of town. Schofield Barracks alone is larger than Wahiawa. Wahiawa is also the home of the U.S. Navy's Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station Pacific.
Vehicular routes heading towards the North Shore from Wahiawa are Kamehameha Highway (State Rte. 80) to Haleiwa and Kaukonahua Road (State Rte. 801) to Waialua. Wheeler and Schofield are reached along Wilikina Drive (Wahiawa Bypass) (State Rte. 99), which bypasses Wahiawa from the south bridge, a road that eventually connects to both Kamehameha Highway and Kaukonahua Road northwest of town. Kamehameha Highway continues south (as State Rte. 99) past Wheeler to Mililani Town. However, the Interstate H-2 terminates at Wilikina Drive near the Kamehameha Highway intersection, and is a less congested route southward to Mililani and beyond to Pearl City and Honolulu via Interstate H-1. Kunia Road (State Rte. 750) runs from Wilikina Drive, between Schofield and Wheeler (on the bypass), then southward along the mostly still agricultural western side of the plain to Kunia and Waipahu beyond.
Choose the Ideal Electrician Vocational School near Wahiawa HI
Picking the ideal electrician training program will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to examine and compare between the training programs you are looking at. It’s a must that any electrical tech school that you are examining includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom instruction should offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Courses vary in length and the kind of credential offered, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best serve your needs. Every program provides unique possibilities for certification also. Perhaps the best means to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Take the time to sit in on some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you pick is the right one for you. With the right training, effort and commitment, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Wahiawa HI.
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