How to Select the Best Electrician Vocational School near Gakona Alaska
The initial step to learning to be an electrical contractor or tradesman is locating an electrician trade school near Gakona AK. But with numerous technical schools to pick from, just how do you approach making sure that you enroll in the right one? Especially because there are a number of variables to consider. For example, many prospective students will begin by searching 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 least expensive tuition. While location and cost are important, they are not the sole factors that must be evaluated. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifiers should influence your final decision when selecting an electrician training school. We will talk about that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But to begin with, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the training choices that are accessible.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Options
There are several approaches to obtain electrician instruction in a technical or vocational school near Gakona AK. You may select a certificate or diploma program, or receive an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at a few schools, but are not as common as the first three alternatives. Often these programs are made available combined with an apprenticeship program, which are required by most states in order to be licensed or if you want to earn certification. Bellow are short explanations of the three most typical programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually offered by Alaska trade and technical schools and require approximately a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards students who would like to join an apprenticeship faster as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degrees require 2 years to finish and are offered by Alaska community colleges, usually as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They provide a more comprehensive education while providing the foundation that prepares students to enter into their apprenticeship program.
As earlier stated, Bachelor’s Degrees are offered at certain Alaska colleges, but are less favored at 4 years than the other briefer programs. Many states mandate that an apprenticeship of no less than 2 years and more typically four years be performed before licensing. For that reason, many students are anxious to commence their paid apprenticeship, especially if it’s not part of their educational program.
Electrician Certification and Licensing Guidelines
Electricians in Gakona AK can carry out a multitude of functions, including testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in buildings and homes are up to code standards. After completing an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are mandated to be licensed in most states or municipalities. The period of apprenticeship varies by state, but generally about four to five years of practical experience is called for before taking the licensing examination. The exams typically test electrical theory and general knowledge, as well as understanding of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Receiving certification is also an optional means for an electrician to differentiate him or herself as a skilled and experienced professional. The certifications offered differ by state and may be obtained in several specializations, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process in most cases includes three levels of competency:
- 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 crucial that the electrician trade school that you enroll in not only delivers a solid educational 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 Schools Online
A possibility that you might have looked at is enrolling in an online electrician program to earn a degree or a certificate. While online training programs have become more accepted as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this situation they are not totally internet based. Virtually all electrician schools require partial attendance on-campus to obtain practical hands-on training. But since the balance of the classes may be accessed online, internet learning may be a more accommodating alternative for students that have limited time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online degree programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their on-campus counterparts. Commuting expenses from Gakona AK are also minimized and some of the study materials can be available on line also. All of these benefits can make electrician online tech schools more economical and convenient. And a number are fully accredited, which we will deal with in our due diligence checklist.
Questions to Ask Electrician Training Schools
Once you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to narrow down your training options. Considering that there are so many electrician vocational and trade schools in the Gakona AK region, it’s essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The initial two that we discussed were location and the cost of tuition. If you are interested in earning an online degree, then that must be an option that your final school offers. And even though all three qualifiers may be important when making your determination, there are other factors 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 trade school.
Accreditation. A large number of electrician vocational schools have earned either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for instance electrical technology. Confirm that the Gakona AK school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited programs. Additionally, some states require 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 or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A lower completion rate might signify that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It might also mean that the instructors were not qualified to train the students. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which can mean more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but also that it has the network of contacts to assist Gakona AK students secure apprenticeships or jobs.
Apprenticeship Programs. A large number of electrician vocational programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical contractors or labor unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with Gakona AK area electricians or electrical companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by providing hands-on training, but it also provides employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be using in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the electrical tech you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. Otherwise, ask a local Gakona AK electrical company if they can provide some tips. Additionally keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Gakona home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s important that you get as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in larger classes. Ask if you can sit in on some of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Talk with several of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, talk to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of expertise is and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Gakona AK, confirm that the schools you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
College For Electrician Gakona Alaska
Selecting the right electrical trade school will probably be the most critical decision you will make to launch your new trade. You originally came to this website due to an interest in College For Electrician and wanting more information on the topic Fastest Way To Become An Electrician. But as we have covered in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to evaluate and compare between the schools you are reviewing. It’s a prerequisite that any electrical tech school that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes should be small in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world context, and the curriculum should be up-to-date and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the kind of credential offered, so you will need to decide what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Every training program provides unique options for certification as well. Probably the best means to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to monitor a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you pick is the ideal one for you. With the proper training, hard work and commitment, the end outcome will be a new career as a professional electrician in Gakona AK.
More Electric Locations in Alaska
Gakona /ɡəˈkoʊnə/ (Ggax Kuna’ in Ahtna Athabascan) is a census-designated place (CDP) in the Valdez-Cordova Census Area in the U.S. state of Alaska. As of the 2010 census, the population of the CDP was 218, up from 215 in 2000.
Gakona is located at 62°18′17″N 145°16′24″W / 62.30472°N 145.27333°W / 62.30472; -145.27333 (62.301940, -145.30194) (Sec. 18, T006N, R001E, Copper River Meridian). It is positioned in the Chitina Recording District in the center of Copper Valley, surrounded by mountains and the Copper River.
Gakona is at the confluence of the Copper and Gakona rivers, 15 miles (24 km) northeast of Glennallen. It lies at mile 2 on the Tok Cut-Off to the Glenn Highway, just east of the Richardson Highway. Gakona is located in the continental climate zone, with long, cold winters and relatively warm summers. Temperature extremes have been recorded from −62 to 91 °F (−52 to 33 °C). Snowfall averages 61 inches (150 cm), with total precipitation of 13 inches (330 mm) per year.