How to Become an Electrician in Erie Illinois
The initial step to becoming an electrical tradesman or contractor is locating an electrician trade school near Erie IL. But with so many vocational schools to select from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the ideal one? Especially because there are a number of variables to examine. For example, some students will begin by searching for schools that are nearby their home. When they have located a few that are within driving range, they will choose the one with the least expensive tuition. Although location and cost are significant, they are not the only things that should be examined. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, as well as their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifications should contribute toward your final judgment when selecting an electrician school. We will address that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the training options that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Erie IL
There are several options to get electrician instruction in a trade or technical school near Erie IL. You may enroll in a diploma or certificate program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at certain schools, but are not as common as the first three alternatives. Often these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states in order to become licensed or if you intend to become certified. Bellow are short explanations of the three most typical programs offered.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually offered by Illinois technical and trade schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are geared towards individuals who want to get into an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take 2 years to complete and are offered by Illinois junior or community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while providing the foundation that prepares students to join their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are available at certain Illinois colleges, but are less favored at four years than the other shorter programs. Most states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and in most cases 4 years be completed before licensing. Therefore, many 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 Erie IL can carry out a wide range of duties, such as testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in the majority of states or municipalities. The duration of apprenticeship differs by state, but typically around four to five years of practical experience is required before taking the licensing exam. The exams typically evaluate electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional method for an electrician to distinguish her or himself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered differ by state and may be acquired in various specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually entails three levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations 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 trade school that you select not only provides a solid academic foundation, but also helps prep you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might need to pass in the future.
Enrolling in Electrician Programs Online in Erie IL
A possibility that you might have looked at is choosing an online electrician school to earn a degree or a certificate. Even though online schools have become more prevalent as a way of attending class without needing to travel, in this case they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician training programs require some attendance on-campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the rest of the classes may be attended online, distance learning might be a more convenient alternative for individuals that have minimal time for schooling. And as a bonus many online training programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional counterparts. Driving costs from Erie IL are also minimized and a portion of the study materials may be available online as well. All of these benefits can make online electrician tech schools more affordable and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our questions to ask checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Technical Schools
Once you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to narrow down your training options. Considering that there are so many electrician tech and trade schools in the Erie IL region, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must satisfy. The first two that we talked about 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 while all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your selection, there are other factors that must be considered as well. Below is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to analyze prior to choosing an electrical technical school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician vocational programs have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Make sure that the Erie IL program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you acquire an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited programs. Also, many 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 looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate may indicate that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It could also signify that the instructors were not competent to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive list of graduates, which can 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 trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Erie IL students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician trade programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of electrical companies or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with Erie IL area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the school facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical technician you are working with regarding what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Erie IL electrical company if they can give you some tips. Additionally bear in mind that unless you are able to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Erie residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there might be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much one-on-one 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 observe how big they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to some of the teachers and learn what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Make sure that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Erie IL, confirm that the programs you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Erie IL?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Erie IL area.
According to the 2010 census, Erie has a total area of 1.449 square miles (3.75 km2), of which 1.44 square miles (3.73 km2) (or 99.38%) is land and 0.009 square miles (0.02 km2) (or 0.62%) is water.
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 1,589 people, 630 households, and 466 families residing in the village. The population density was 438.2/km² (1.132.7/sq mi). There were 663 housing units at an average density of 472.6 per square mile (182.8/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 98.80% White, 0.25% African American, 0.13% Native American, 0.38% from other races, and 0.44% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.88% of the population.
There were 630 households out of which 33.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.4% were married couples living together, 8.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.0% were non-families. 23.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 2.98.
Enroll in the Right Electrician Trade School near Erie IL
Selecting the right electrician trade school will probably be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are several things that you will need to examine and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a necessity that any electrician training that you are assessing includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom instruction needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Courses vary in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best satisfy your needs. Each training program offers unique options for certification as well. Probably the best way to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Invest some time to attend some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you select is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the end outcome will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Erie IL.
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