How to Choose a Welder Certification Class near Canton Georgia
Selecting the ideal welder technical school near Canton GA is an essential first step to launching your new career as a professional welder. But since there are a lot of schools to choose from, how do you determine which ones to consider? And more notably, once you have narrowed down your options, how do you pick the right one? Many people start by reviewing the schools that are closest to their homes. When they have found those that are within commuting distance, they are drawn toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are important considerations when reviewing welder vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s wise to develop a list of qualifications that your selected welding school must have. But before we examine our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welding Certificate and Degree Training Programs
There are a number of options to get training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can receive a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced courses than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered combined with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief explanations of the most prevalent welding programs offered in Canton GA.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Georgia trade and technical schools and take about a year to finish. They are more hands-on training in nature, fashioned primarily to develop welding skills. They can provide a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or supplemental skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take two years to complete and are usually offered by Georgia community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology furnishes a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still providing the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
Some states and municipalities do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so be sure to check for your location of potential employment. If required, the welder school you choose should prepare you for any licensing exams that you will have to pass in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a professional welder in Canton GA.
Welder Certification Options
There are multiple organizations that offer welder certifications, which evaluate the skill level and knowledge of those applying. A large number of Canton GA employers not only demand a certificate or degree from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a highly regarded organization such as the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available based on the type of work that the welder performs. A few of the skills that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with certain metal thicknesses
- Work with certain kinds of welds
- Perform according to contract specifications
As already mentioned, some cities, states or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some also require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to Canton GA employers that you are an extremely skilled and knowledgeable welder. So just as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and confirm that the welding vocational school you decide on preps you for certification if needed.
Online Welding Training Programs
Welding is truly a hands-on kind of vocation, and therefore not extremely suitable for online training. However, there are a few online welding programs offered by specific Canton GA area community colleges and vocational schools that can be credited toward a certificate or degree program. These classes primarily cover such subjects as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help provide a novice a basis to initiate their education and training. Nevertheless, the most critical point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials until you actually do it. Naturally that can’t be done online. These skills need to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is better suited for experienced welders that desire to advance their expertise or possibly obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding degree or certificate program, be very careful and make sure that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of environment.
How to Pick a Welder Tech School
As soon as you have chosen the credential you want to obtain, a degree, certificate or diploma, you can start to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are a large number of welder trade and vocational schools in the Canton GA area. That’s why it’s necessary to establish up front what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have already discussed 2 significant ones that many people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifiers, they are not the only ones that should be considered. After all, the program you pick is going to furnish the education that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So below are more factors you may need to consider before selecting a welding trade school.
Accreditation. It’s extremely important that the welder trade school you select is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are 2 basic types of accreditation. The school may receive Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a specific program the school offers, for example Welding Technology. So confirm that the program you select is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, like the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you obtain a superior education, the accreditation may also assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for Canton GA non-accredited schools. Finally, for those states or municipalities that mandate licensing, they may require that the welding training program be accredited as well.
Job Assistance and Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous welder degree or certificate programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will assist in placing you in an apprenticeship or a job after graduation. Ask if the schools you are considering help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job assistance program. The schools must have associations with local unions and various Canton GA metal working businesses to which they can place their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can assist students in finding employment and establish relationships within the local welding community.
Completion and Job Placement Rates. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students that enroll in an instructional program and finish it. It’s important that the welder school you pick has a high completion rate. A reduced rate might indicate that the students who joined the program were dissatisfied with the training, the instructors, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also an indication of the quality of training. A higher job placement rate will not only verify that the program has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of Canton GA employer relationships to assist students secure employment or apprenticeships upon graduation.
Modern Equipment and Facilities. After you have decreased your choice of welding schools to two or three possibilities, you should consider visiting the campuses to inspect their facilities. Confirm that both the equipment and the facilities that you will be trained on are modern. Specifically, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with in the field. If you are uncertain what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. Otherwise, ask a local Canton GA welding contractor if they can give you a few tips.
School Location. Although we previously briefly covered the significance of location, there are a few additional issues that we need to address. You should bear in mind that unless you can move, the welding school you select needs to be within commuting distance of your Canton GA home. If you do opt to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation expenses there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is particularly true for welder diploma programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, most likely their placements are within the school’s regional community. So the location of the school needs to be in an area or state where you ultimately will desire to work.
Smaller Classes. Personalized training is essential for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to get overlooked in larger classes and not get much personalized training. Find out what the average class size is for the Canton GA area welding schools you are considering. Ask if you can sit in on some classes so that you can observe just how much personal attention the students are receiving. While there, speak with some of the students and get their opinions. Similarly, talk with a couple of the instructors and ask what their welding experience has been and what credentials and certifications they have earned.
Convenient Class Scheduling. Some people learn a new trade while still employed at their current job. Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are looking at are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only attend classes in the evenings or on weekends near Canton GA, verify that the schools you are looking at provide those alternatives. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make up classes if you you miss any due to work, illness or family circumstances.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Welding Professional?When getting ready to interview for a Welder job, it's advantageous to consider questions you may be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask Welding applicants is "What compelled you to select Welding as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the private reasons you may have for being a Welding Tech, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating primarily to Welding, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you need to ready several strategies about how you want to answer them. Considering there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an outstanding Welder and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but take down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Choose the Right Welding Vocational Program near Canton GA
Picking the right welding school will undoubtedly be the most important decision you will make to launch your new trade. As we have discussed in this article, there are several things that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any welder training program that you are examining includes a lot of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and every student must have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom teaching needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Courses 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 serve your needs. Every training program offers unique possibilities for certification also. Probably the best means to research your short list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the students and instructors. Invest some time to monitor some classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you decide on is the best one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the end result will be a new trade as a professional welder in Canton GA.
About Canton Georgia
Canton is a city in and the county seat of Cherokee County,Georgia, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 22,958, up from 7,709 in 2000.
Canton is located near the center of Cherokee County at 34°13′38″N 84°29′41″W / 34.22722°N 84.49472°W / 34.22722; -84.49472 (34.227307, −84.494727). The city lies just north of Holly Springs and south of Ball Ground. Interstate 575 passes through the eastern side of the city, with access from exits 14 through 20. Canton is 40 miles (64 km) north of downtown Atlanta via I-575 and I-75.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 18.7 square miles (48.5 km2), of which 18.6 square miles (48.2 km2) is land and 0.15 square miles (0.4 km2), or 0.76%, is water. The Etowah River, a tributary of the Coosa River, flows from east to west through the center of the city.
As of the 2010 census, there were 22,958 people, 8,204 households, and 5,606 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,234.3 people per square mile (476.8/km²). There were 9,341 housing units at an average density of 502.2 per square mile (194.0/km²).
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