How to Pick the Best Welding Vocational School near East Hartford Connecticut
Finding the right welding vocational school near East Hartford CT is an essential first step to launching your new career as a professional welder. But since there are so many schools to pick from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more importantly, once you have narrowed down your alternatives, how do you pick the best one? Most prospective students begin by looking at the schools that are closest to their homes. When they have identified those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the cheapest one. Yes, location and tuition cost are crucial issues when examining welder vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other concerns include such things as accreditation, reputation and job placement rates. So before beginning your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s wise to create a list of qualifications that your selected school must have. But before we explore our due diligence checklist, let’s talk a little bit about how to become a welder.
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Welding Degree and Certificate Training Classes
There are several options available to receive training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can earn a a certificate, a diploma or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Engineering or Welding Technology, but are more advanced degrees than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are short descriptions of the most typical welding programs available in the East Hartford CT area.
- Diploma and Certificate Programs are usually offered by trade and technical schools and take about 1 year to complete. They are more hands-on training in nature, fashioned largely to teach welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or additional skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to complete and are most often offered by community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology provides a more well-rounded education than the diploma or certificate while still supplying the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
A number of municipalities and states do have licensing prerequisites for welders, so don’t forget to find out for your location of potential employment. As needed, the welding school you select should prep you for any licensing examinations that you will need to take in addition to providing the appropriate training to become a professional welder.
Welder Certification Options
There are several institutions that provide welding certifications, which evaluate the knowledge and skill level of those applying. A large number of East Hartford CT employers not only expect a certificate or degree from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a highly regarded agency like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available dependent on the kind of work that the welder does. Just some of the skills that certification can acknowledge are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specific metal thicknesses
- Work with certain types of welds
- Perform in compliance with contract specifications
As formerly mentioned, various cities, states or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those calling for licensing, many additionally require certification for different types of work. Certification is also a means to prove to employers that you are a highly skilled and experienced welder. So similarly as with licensing, check the requirements for your location and make certain that the welding tech school you choose preps you for certification if needed.
Points to Ask Welder Tech Schools
Once you have chosen the credential you want to obtain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to evaluate schools. As you probably know, there are a large number of welding vocational and trade schools in the East Hartford CT area. That’s why it’s necessary to decide up front what qualifications your chosen school must have. We have previously discussed 2 important ones that many people consider first, which are location and the cost of tuition. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifications, 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 vocation as a welder. So following are some additional factors you might want to consider before choosing a welder trade school.
Accreditation. It’s essential that the welder vocational school you choose is accredited by either a regional or a national agency. There are 2 standard kinds of accreditation. The school may earn Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school has, for example Welding Technology. So make sure 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, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). Besides helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, the accreditation may also assist in getting financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable in East Hartford CT for schools that are not accredited. Finally, for those states or local governments that require licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.
Job Placement and Apprenticeship Programs. Numerous welder degree or diploma programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Some other schools will help place you in an apprenticeship or a job upon graduation. Ask if the schools you are looking at help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. These schools should have associations with local unions and other metal working businesses to which they can refer their students. Older schools may have a larger network of graduates that they can utilize for placements. These programs can help students find employment and establish relationships within the East Hartford CT welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that begin an academic program and finish it. It’s crucial that the welder school you choose has a higher completion rate. A reduced rate may mean that the students who enrolled in the program were dissatisfied with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and dropped out. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the quality of training. A higher job placement rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the field, but additionally that it has the network of East Hartford CT contacts to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment upon graduation.
Modern Equipment and Facilities. After you have narrowed down your choice of welder schools to two or three options, you should consider going to the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Confirm that both the facilities and the equipment 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 unsure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, consult with the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local East Hartford CT welding contractor if they can give you a few pointers.
School Location. Although we already briefly covered the importance of location, there are a couple of additional issues that we need to deal with. You should remember that unless you have the ability to relocate, the welder school you pick must be within commuting distance of your East Hartford CT home. If you do choose to attend an out-of-state school, besides moving expenses there might be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welding degree programs offered by community colleges. Also, if the school offers an apprenticeship or job placement program, more than likely their placements are within the school’s local community. So the location of the school should be in an area or state where you subsequently will want to work.
Smaller Classes. Personalized instruction is important for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be lost in larger classes and not obtain much personalized instruction. Ask what the usual class size is for the welder schools you are considering. Inquire if you can sit in on some classes so that you can experience just how much personal attention the students are getting. While there, talk with several of the students and get their opinions. Also, talk with a few of the teachers and find out what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they have earned.
Flexible Class Scheduling. Lots of folks learn a new trade while still working at their current job. Check to see that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are convenient enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near East Hartford CT, make sure that the schools you are reviewing offer those alternatives. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you pick offers part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the protocol is to make up classes if you you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Online Welding Courses
Welding is truly a manual kind of trade, and therefore not extremely compatible with training online. However, there are a few online welding courses offered by various community colleges and technical schools in the greater East Hartford CT area that can count toward a certificate or degree program. These courses primarily deal with such subjects as reading blueprints, safety,, and metallurgy. They can help give a beginner a basis to begin their education and training. However, the most significant point is that you can’t learn how to weld or work with welding materials until you actually do it. Obviously that can’t be accomplished online. These skills have to be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship. Online or distance learning is more appropriate for seasoned welders that want to advance their expertise or possibly obtain a more advanced degree. So if you should find an online welding certificate or degree program, be very cautious and make sure that the larger part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
Welding Training East Hartford CT
Selecting the right welder school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new profession. You originally stopped by our website because you had an interest in Welding Training and wanted more information on the topic Training For Welding. However, as we have discussed in this article, there are a number of factors that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are looking at. It’s a must that any welding training that you are examining includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be small in size and every student must have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom education should provide a real-world perspective, and the curriculum should be current and conform with industry standards. Programs differ in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each training program offers different options for certification as well. Perhaps The ideal approach to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the teachers and students. Invest some time to sit in on some classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you select is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the final result will be a new career as a professional welder in East Hartford CT.
Other Connecticut Welder Locations
East Hartford, Connecticut
The town is located on the east bank of the Connecticut River, directly across from Hartford, Connecticut. The town includes the neighborhoods of Burnside and Hockanum. According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 18.7 square miles (48.5 km2), of which 18.0 square miles (46.6 km2) is land and 0.73 square miles (1.9 km2), or 3.93%, is water.
When the Connecticut Valley became known to Europeans around 1631, it was inhabited by what were known as the River Tribes — a number of small clans of Native Americans living along the Great River and its tributaries. Of these tribes the Podunks occupied territory now lying in the towns of East Hartford and South Windsor, and numbered, by differing estimates, from sixty to two hundred bowmen. They were governed by two sachems, Waginacut and Arramamet, and were connected in some way with the Native Americans who lived across the Great River, in what is now Windsor. The region north of the Hockanum River was generally called Podunk; that south of the river, Hockanum; but these were no certain designations, and by some all the meadow along the Great River was called Hockanum.
In 1659, Thomas Burnham (1617–1688) purchased the tract of land now covered by the towns of South Windsor and East Hartford from Tantinomo, chief sachem of the Podunk Indians. Burnham lived on the land and later willed it to his nine children. The town of Hartford once included the land now occupied by the towns of East Hartford, Manchester, Bolton, Vernon, and West Hartford. In 1783, East Hartford became a separate town, which included Manchester in its city limits until 1823.
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