How to Become an Electrician in Harwood Heights Illinois
The initial step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Harwood Heights IL. But with numerous technical schools to choose from, just how do you approach making sure that you enroll in the right one? Especially since there are so many points to consider. For example, some students will begin by looking for schools that are nearby their home. Once they have identified some that are within driving distance, they will choose the one with the most affordable tuition. Even though cost and location are of importance, they are not the only factors that must be considered. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifiers should influence your ultimate judgment when choosing an electrician school. We will talk about that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But first, let’s review a little bit about becoming an electrician and the instructional options that are offered.
Electrician Degree, Diploma and Certificate Programs near Harwood Heights IL
There are several ways to get electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Harwood Heights IL. You can select 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 other three options. In many cases these programs are offered together with an apprenticeship, which are required by most states in order to be licensed or if you want to become certified. Bellow are short summaries of the three most typical programs offered.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically offered by Illinois technical and trade schools and take about a year to finish. They furnish a solid foundation and are aimed towards students who want to join an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees involve two years to complete and are provided by Illinois junior or community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more extensive education while supplying the foundation that prepares students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degree programs are offered at certain Illinois institutions, but are less preferred 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 4 years be completed before licensing. Because of that, most students are eager to start their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Guidelines
Electricians in Harwood Heights IL can undertake a multitude of services, 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 become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The period of apprenticeship differs by state, but normally around 4 to 5 years of experience is called for in order to take the licensing exam. The exams commonly assess electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also an optional means for an electrician to differentiate him or herself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available vary by state and can be obtained in numerous specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases 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) along with the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s important that the electrician tech school that you select 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 Schools in Harwood Heights IL
An alternative that you may have looked at is enrolling in an online electrician program to earn a certificate or degree. Even though online schools have become more accepted as a way of attending class without the need for travel, in this situation they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician schools require partial attendance on campus to receive hands-on practical training. But since the remainder of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning may be a more accommodating alternative for students that have minimal time for education. And as an added benefit many online training programs have a lower tuition cost compared to their on campus counterparts. Commuting expenses from Harwood Heights IL are also minimized and some of the study materials may be accessed online as well. All of these advantages can make online electrician tech schools more affordable and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will cover in our questions to ask checklist.
What to Ask Electrician Tech Schools
Once you have made a decision to earn a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to refine your school options. Because there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Harwood Heights IL region, it’s important to have a checklist of criteria that each school must satisfy. The first 2 that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be a feature that your final school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be important when making your selection, there are other variables that need to be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those added qualifications that you will need to analyze prior to choosing an electrical trade school.
Accreditation. Numerous electrician technical programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example electrical technology. Verify that the Harwood Heights IL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, a number of states require that the electrician training program be accredited in order to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate might signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It may also signify that the teachers were not qualified to instruct 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 directory of alumni, which may produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help Harwood Heights IL students obtain apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician trade programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrician contractors or trade unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with Harwood Heights IL area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by supplying practical training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the area electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are up-to-date and what you will be working with in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the electrical tech you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Harwood Heights IL electrical contracting company if they can give you some suggestions. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Harwood Heights residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you get as much individualized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between instructors and students. Speak to several of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is and what degrees or certifications they hold.
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 Harwood Heights IL, check that the programs you are reviewing offer those options. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family responsibilities.
Considering Attending an Electrician School near Harwood Heights IL?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Harwood Heights IL area.
Harwood Heights, Illinois
Harwood Heights is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 8,612 at the 2010 census. The current mayor is Arlene Jezierny. She is the second woman to serve as mayor in Harwood Heights, the first being Margaret Fuller. Harwood Heights and its neighbor Norridge form an enclave surrounded by the City of Chicago.
As of the census of 2000, there were 8,297 people, 3,505 households, and 2,183 families residing in the village. The population density was 10,094.4 people per square mile (3,906.7/km²). There were 3,606 housing units at an average density of 4,387.2 per square mile (1,697.9/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 92.13% White, 0.31% African American, 0.24% Native American, 4.42% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 1.54% from other races, and 1.33% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.83% of the population.
Based on United States Census data, Harwood Heights is listed as an Illinois community with a significant number of Polish Americans, at 32.5%. Among communities in the United States with populations of 500 or more, Harwood Heights has the second highest percentage of residents born in Poland (18.8%). It also has the seventh highest percentage of residents born in Italy among communities in the United States (4.9%).
Select the Ideal Electrician Tech School near Harwood Heights IL
Choosing the ideal electrician training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new career. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to evaluate and compare between the training programs you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any electrician tech school that you are reviewing includes a considerable amount of hands-on training. Classes should be smaller in size and each student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom education should offer a real-world perspective, and the course of study should be current and conform with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the kind of credential offered, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and degree or certificate will best satisfy your needs. Every program offers different possibilities for certification also. Probably the best means to research your final list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the students and faculty. Invest some time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the program you select is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, effort and dedication, the end outcome will be a new career as a professional electrician in Harwood Heights IL.
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