What to Ask Plumbing Vocational Schools
When you have made a decision to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to focus your training options. Since there are so many plumbing vocational and trade schools in the Daphne AL area, it's essential to have a checklist of criteria that each school must satisfy. The initial 2 that we mentioned were location and the cost of tuition. And even though both qualifiers may be important when making your determination, there are other factors that need to be taken into account as well. Below is a checklist of those added qualifications that you will need to assess before choosing a plumber tech school.
Is the Plumbing School Accredited? A large number of plumbing vocational programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They can earn Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school's programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Make sure that the Daphne AL school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping guarantee that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial assistance or student loans, which are in many cases not available for non-accredited schools. Additionally, a number of states mandate that the plumbing training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing or certification.
Is the Plumbing School Licensed? In addition to accreditation, an additional way of determining if a trade school you’re reiewing is reputable is by making sure that it’s properly licensed. Licensing is usually controlled and regulated by state agencies, such as the Alabama Department of Education. If you’re not sure, ask the school which state agency is responsible for its licensing and then verify that it’s up to date.
How Long has the School been in Business? Another means of determining the quality of a technical school is to find out how long it’s been in business. The longer a school has been in operation, the more likely that its programs are highly rated and regarded. Conversely, schools that are not well regarded or that provide low quality training generally don’t stand the test of time. However, keep in mind that even the best of Daphne AL schools had to start from their first day of operation, so only use it as one of several qualifications for each school you are considering.
What are the School’s Completion and Placement Rates? Ask the plumbing schools you are looking at what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate may signify that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It could 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 more extensive list of alumni, which can produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only confirm that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help students secure apprenticeships or jobs in the Daphne AL area.
Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored? Many plumber technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating trade and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of plumbing contractors or labor unions. Check if the schools you are reviewing have working partnerships with local Daphne AL plumbers or plumbing specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the local plumbing professional community.
Are there Modern Facilities? Make sure that the school facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the master plumber you are working under regarding what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Daphne AL plumbing company if they can provide some suggestions.
Where is the School Located? Unless you are able to relocate, the school needs to be within driving distance of your Daphne AL residence. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there might be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Are there Smaller Classes? It's important that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a few of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Talk with some of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the teachers and find out what their level of experience is in Daphne AL and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Is the Class Schedule Convenient? Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you are only able to go to classes at night or on weekends near Daphne AL, confirm that the programs you are considering provide those options. If you can only attend part-time, make certain that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, ask what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.