How to Become an Electrician in Waterboro Maine
The initial step to becoming an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Waterboro ME. But with so many vocational schools to choose from, just how do you tackle making sure that you enroll in the best one? Particularly because there are a number of variables to evaluate. For example, some potential students will commence by looking for schools that are close to their residence. Once they have found a few that are within driving distance, they will decide on the one with the most affordable tuition. While cost and location are important, they are not the sole qualifications 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 qualifiers should help mold your ultimate decision when selecting an electrician school. We will talk about that checklist in greater detail later in this post. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the educational options that are available.
Electrician Certificate, Diploma and Degree Options near Waterboro ME
There are multiple options to get electrician training in a vocational or trade school near Waterboro ME. You can select a certificate or diploma program, or obtain an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are available at a few schools, but are not as prevalent as the first three options. In many cases these programs are made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program, which are mandated by the majority of states in order to become licensed or if you want to earn certification. Following are brief summaries of the three most common programs available.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are typically provided by Maine technical and trade schools and require about a year to finish. They furnish a solid foundation and are geared towards students who wish to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees take 2 years to finish and are provided by Maine community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They furnish a more comprehensive education while supplying the foundation that prepares students to begin their apprenticeship program.
As previously stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are accessible at some Maine institutions, but are less preferred at 4 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 carried out before licensing. Therefore, most students are eager to commence their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician License and Certification Guidelines
Electricians in Waterboro ME can undertake a vast array of functions, including installing, replacing and testing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After finishing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to become licensed in the majority of municipalities and states. The length of apprenticeship differs by state, but generally around 4 to 5 years of prior experience is required in order to take the licensing exam. The exams usually evaluate general knowledge and electrical theory, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional method for an electrician to identify her or himself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications available differ by state and may be obtained in numerous specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification procedure in most cases entails three 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 important that the electrician trade school that you select not only provides a solid academic foundation, but also helps prepare you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might be required to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Training Classes Online in Waterboro ME
An alternative that you may have contemplated is enrolling in an online electrician school to earn a degree or a certificate. Even though online training programs have become more prevalent as a means of attending class without the need for travel, in this situation they are not totally internet based. Just about all electrician training programs require partial attendance on-campus to receive practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning can be a more practical choice for individuals that have limited time for education. And as a bonus many online degree programs have a lower tuition cost compared to their on-campus alternatives. Travelling expenses from Waterboro ME are also reduced and some of the study materials may be available online also. All of these advantages can make online electrician vocational schools more economical and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
Things to Ask Electrician Tech Schools
Once you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to refine your school options. Since there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Waterboro ME region, it’s important to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must satisfy. The initial 2 that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. If you are interested in earning an degree online, then that must be an option that your final school offers. And although all three qualifiers may be critical when making your decision, there are additional variables that need to be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to research before selecting an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician trade schools have attained 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 a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Verify that the Waterboro ME school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, a number of states mandate that the electrician training program be accredited for it to qualify 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 course. A lower completion rate may indicate that students were dissatisfied with the course and dropped out. It might also signify that the teachers were not qualified to train the students. It’s similarly important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive 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 will not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist Waterboro ME students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many electrician trade programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical contractors or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are comparing have working partnerships with Waterboro ME area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by supplying practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make sure that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using on the job. If you are currently 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 Waterboro ME electrical contractor if they can provide some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within driving distance of your Waterboro residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there can be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you receive as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between teachers and students. Speak with a few of the students and get their comments 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. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to go to classes at night or on weekends near Waterboro ME, verify that the schools you are looking at provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, find out 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 Waterboro ME?
Following is a little bit of background information about the Waterboro ME area.
The town includes the districts of North (04061), South (04087), and East (04030) Waterboro, in addition to the largest development in southern Maine, Lake Arrowhead Community. The introduction of Maine subdivision regulation, and Maine Planning Boards, is the direct result of the creation of the largest subdivision, Lake Arrowhead Community. The reaction of the Maine State Legislature was mandatory Planning Boards, and subdivision regulation.
Abenaki Indians called the area Massabesic, meaning "the place of much water", a reference to the region's lakes. It was part of an extensive tract of land purchased in 1661 by Major William Phillips of Saco from Chief Fluellin. Known as Massabesic Plantation, it included most of modern-day Waterboro, Alfred and Sanford. Phillips died in 1683, and the plantation eventually passed from his heirs to 10 proprietors. One of those proprietors was Colonel Joshua Waters, for whom the town would be named.
Lumbering began to thrive there about 1764. Captain John Smith from Kittery was the first permanent settler, arriving in 1768. On March 6, 1787, the Massachusetts General Court incorporated the township as Waterborough. In 1790, Old Corners became the site of the Court of General Sessions, although in 1805 the county seat shifted to Alfred. In 1895, the name was shortened to Waterboro.
Select the Ideal Electrician Trade School near Waterboro ME
Choosing the ideal electrical training program will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to begin your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several factors that you will need to evaluate and compare among the schools you are reviewing. It’s a prerequisite that any electrician training program that you are assessing includes a good deal of hands-on training. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world frame of reference, and the course of study should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in length and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Each program offers different possibilities for certification as well. Perhaps the best way to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the faculty and students. Invest some time to sit in on some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you decide on is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and dedication, the end result will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Waterboro ME.
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