How to Select the Best Electrician Vocational School near Durango Colorado
The first step to becoming an electrical tradesman or contractor is locating an electrician trade school near Durango CO. But with so many technical schools to choose from, just how do you tackle making certain that you enroll in the right one? Particularly since there are so many factors to evaluate. For instance, some students will begin by searching for schools that are nearby their residence. Once they have located a few that are within commuting range, they will choose the one with the lowest tuition. While location and cost are important, they are not the only things that must be examined. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, along with their job placement and graduation rates. These and additional qualifiers should influence your final decision when choosing an electrician training school. We will discuss that checklist in more detail later in this article. But first, let’s talk a little bit about becoming an electrician and the training choices that are accessible.
Electrician Degree, Certificate and Diploma Programs
There are three general ways to get electrician training in a trade or technical school near Durango CO. You may enroll in a certificate or diploma program, or earn an Associate Degree. Bachelor’s Degrees are obtainable at certain schools, but are not as common as the first three options. Frequently these programs are offered in conjunction with an apprenticeship program, which are required by most states to become licensed or if you wish to become certified. Bellow are short descriptions of the three most common programs offered.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are generally provided by Colorado vocational and trade schools and take about a year to complete. They provide a solid foundation and are aimed towards individuals who would like to get into an apprenticeship more quickly as a journeyman electrician.
- Associate Degree Programs require two years to complete and are offered by Colorado community colleges, typically as an Associate Degree in Electrical Technology. They offer a more well-rounded education while providing the foundation that readies students to join their apprenticeship program.
As previously mentioned, Bachelor’s Degrees are available at certain Colorado colleges, but are less favored at 4 years than the other shorter programs. Most states require that an apprenticeship of at least 2 years and more typically four years be performed before licensing. Because of that, the majority of students are anxious to commence their paid apprenticeship, particularly if it’s not a component of their academic program.
Electrician License and Certification Prerequisites
Electricians in Durango CO can perform a multitude of functions, such as testing, installing and replacing electrical systems, and making sure that the wiring in houses and buildings comply with code standards. After concluding an apprenticeship, journeyman electricians are required to be licensed in most states or municipalities. The length of apprenticeship varies by state, but typically about four to five years of practical experience is required in order to take the licensing exam. The exams commonly assess electrical theory and general knowledge, in addition to knowledge of the National Electrical Code (NEC). Obtaining certification is also a voluntary means for an electrician to differentiate her or himself as a experienced and skilled professional. The certifications offered differ by state and may be earned in numerous specialties, including cable splicing as an example. The certification process usually includes 3 levels of competency:
- An experience requirement
- Passing a written exam
- Passing a practical exam
Examples of certifying organizations include the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC) and also the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET). It’s imperative that the electrician tech school that you select not only furnishes a solid academic foundation, but also helps ready you for passing any certification and licensing examinations that you might be required to take in the future.
Attending Electrician Programs Online
A possibility that you might have looked at is enrolling in an electrician online program to earn a certificate or degree. While online schools have become more popular as a means of attending class without needing to travel, in this instance they are not completely internet based. Pretty much all electrician training programs require some attendance on-campus to get hands-on practical training. But since the balance of the classes can be accessed online, distance learning might be a more convenient alternative for individuals that have minimal time for schooling. And as an added benefit many online training programs have a cheaper tuition cost compared to their traditional competitors. Travelling expenses from Durango CO are also reduced and a portion of the study materials can be accessed online as well. Each of these advantages can make online electrician trade schools more affordable and convenient. And many are fully accredited, which we will cover in our due diligence checklist.
Points to Ask Electrician Training Schools
Once you have decided to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to narrow down your training options. Because there are numerous electrician tech and trade schools in the Durango CO area, it’s important to have a checklist of qualifications that each program must meet. The initial 2 that we mentioned 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 while all three qualifiers may be important when making your determination, there are additional variables that need to be taken into account also. Below is a checklist of those added qualifiers that you will need to analyze before selecting an electrical vocational school.
Accreditation. Many electrician trade schools have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They can acquire Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Confirm that the Durango CO program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting organization, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you receive a quality education, it may help in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited programs. Additionally, a number of states mandate that the electrician training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing.
High Completion and Placement Rates. Ask the electrician training programs you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate may indicate that students were dissatisfied with the course and quit. It may also signify that the teachers were not competent to instruct the students. It’s similarly essential that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to use for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the industry, but also that it has the network of contacts to help Durango CO grads obtain apprenticeships or employment.
Apprenticeship Programs. Most electrician technical programs are taught along with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of electrical companies or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have referring partnerships with Durango CO area electricians or electrical specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a rewarding experience by supplying practical training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional electrician professional community.
Modern Facilities. Make certain that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the electrical technician you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Durango CO electrical contractor if they can give you some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Durango residence. Take note that if you decide to attend 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 training as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can see how large they are and experience the interaction between students and instructors. Speak to a few of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with some of the teachers 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 reviewing are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you are only able to go to classes at night or on weekends near Durango CO, confirm that the schools you are reviewing provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Additionally, ask what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Electrician Vocational Schools Durango Colorado
Picking the ideal 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 Electrician Vocational Schools and wanting more information on the topic Education For Electrician. But as we have addressed in this article, there are many things that you will need to evaluate and compare between the schools you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any electrician training program that you are considering includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching should offer a real-world frame of reference, and the curriculum should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs differ in length and the type of credential provided, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Each program offers different options for certification also. Perhaps The ideal way to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to sit in on a few 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 proper training, effort and dedication, the final outcome will be a new trade as a professional electrician in Durango CO.
More Electric Locations in Colorado
Durango is the county seat and the most populous municipality of La Plata County, Colorado, United States. It is home to Fort Lewis College. The United States Census Bureau reported a population of 16,887 in the 2010 census.
The town was organized in September 1880 to serve the San Juan mining district. The Denver and Rio Grande Railroad (D&RG) chose the site on the Animas River for its depot following a brief and most likely perfunctory negotiation with Animas City, two miles to the north. The city was named by ex-Colorado Governor Alexander C. Hunt after Durango, Mexico, based on his favorable impression of that city resulting from a scouting trip undertaken on behalf of William J. Palmer, the head of the D&RG.
Durango is located at 37°16′N 107°52′W / 37.267°N 107.867°W / 37.267; -107.867 at an elevation of 6,512 ft (1,988 m). According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.8 square miles (18 km2).
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