How to Become an Electrician in Greenfield Illinois
The first step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is enrolling in an electrician trade school near Greenfield IL. But with so many technical schools to pick from, just how do you approach making sure that you enroll in the ideal one? Especially because there are so many factors to examine. For instance, many potential students will start by searching for schools that are nearby their residence. After they have located several that are within commuting range, they will pick the one with the lowest tuition. While cost and location are significant, they are not the sole qualifications that must be considered. Also critical are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, in addition to their graduation and job placement rates. These and additional qualifiers should help mold your final decision when choosing an electrician school. We will address that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But first, let’s talk a little bit about being an electrician and the instructional options that are available.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programs near Greenfield IL
There are several ways to receive electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Greenfield IL. You can choose a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at some schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three options. In many cases these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states to be licensed or if you want to become certified. Following are brief summaries of the 3 most common programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Illinois vocational and trade schools and require about a year to finish. They furnish a good foundation and are geared towards students who wish to enter an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require 2 years to complete and are offered by Illinois junior or community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They provide a more extensive education while supplying the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degree programs are available at certain Illinois institutions, but are less popular at four years than the other shorter programs. The majority of states require that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and in most cases four years be completed before licensing. Because of that, most students are eager to start their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not a component of their academic program.
Electrician Licensing and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Greenfield IL can carry out a multitude of tasks, such as installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes comply with code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to become licensed in most states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship differs by state, but typically around four to five years of experience is needed before taking the licensing exam. The exams commonly evaluate general knowledge and electrical theory, along with knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary means for an electrician to distinguish her or himself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications offered differ by state and may be obtained in many specialties, such as cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure usually includes three levels of proficiency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying agencies include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician trade school that you choose not only furnishes a strong academic foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any licensing and certification exams that you may be required to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Online Schools in Greenfield IL
An option that you might have considered is selecting an electrician online school to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online training programs have become more accepted as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician schools require some attendance on-campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes can be accessed online, internet learning might be a more convenient alternative for students that have minimal time for schooling. And as a bonus many online training programs have a reduced tuition cost compared to their on-campus alternatives. Driving costs from Greenfield IL are also lessened and some of the study materials can be available on line as well. Each of these advantages can make electrician online tech schools more affordable and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will discuss in our questions to ask checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Training Schools
When you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to narrow down your school options. Because there are so many electrician trade and vocational schools in the Greenfield IL area, it’s imperative to have a checklist of criteria that each program must meet. The initial two that we mentioned were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that needs to be a feature that your chosen school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be crucial when making your selection, there are other variables that need to be considered also. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to analyze before enrolling in an electrical trade school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician technical programs have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Make sure that the Greenfield IL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you acquire an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, 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 reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the course. A low completion rate might suggest that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It could also indicate that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s also essential that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of graduates, which may mean more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Greenfield IL grads acquire apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous electrician training programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade 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 referring relationships with Greenfield IL area electricians or electrical professionals. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to form relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the school facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical specialist you are working under concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Greenfield IL electrical contracting company if they can give you some suggestions. Additionally keep in mind that unless you can relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your Greenfield residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to several of the students and get their opinions concerning class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Greenfield IL, confirm that the programs you are comparing provide those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family issues.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Greenfield IL?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Greenfield IL area.
Greenfield is located in eastern Greene County at 39°20′35″N 90°12′35″W / 39.34306°N 90.20972°W / 39.34306; -90.20972 (39.342969, -90.209798).Illinois Route 267 passes through the city, leading north 27 miles (43 km) to Jacksonville and south 13 miles (21 km) to Medora. Carrollton, the Greene County seat, is 13 miles (21 km) to the southwest via Routes 267 and 108.
According to the 2010 census, Greenfield has a total area of 1.783 square miles (4.62 km2), of which 1.72 square miles (4.45 km2) (or 96.47%) is land and 0.063 square miles (0.16 km2) (or 3.53%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,179 people, 500 households, and 330 families residing in the city. The population density was 687.2 people per square mile (264.7/km²). There were 531 housing units at an average density of 309.5 per square mile (119.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 99.24% White, 0.08% African American, 0.42% Native American, and 0.25% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.42% of the population.
Pick the Ideal Electrician Trade School near Greenfield IL
Choosing the ideal electrician training program will probably be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to evaluate and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any electrical training program that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes should be smaller in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom instruction should provide a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers unique options for certification as well. Probably The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and talk with the teachers and students. Invest some time to attend some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you select is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, the final result will be a new occupation as a professional electrician in Greenfield IL.
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