Home >> Alabama >> Phenix City >> Courses For Plumbers


Get Free Info on Plumber Training Phenix City AL 36867


How to Find the Best Plumbing Trade School near Phenix City Alabama

Phenix City Alabama plumbing contractor replacing kitchen sink faucetThe first step to learning to be a plumbing contractor or tradesman is locating a plumbing trade school near Phenix City AL. But with so many technical schools to choose from, just how do you go about making sure that you enroll in the best one? Especially because there are so many points to evaluate. For example, many students will commence by searching for schools that are nearby their home. When they have found several that are within commuting distance, they will pick the one with the lowest tuition. While cost and location are of importance, they are not the sole things that need to be evaluated. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, along with their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifiers should contribute toward your ultimate judgment when selecting a plumbing trade school. We will address that checklist in more detail later in this post. But to begin with, let's review a little bit about becoming a plumber and the educational options that are offered.

Becoming a Plumber

Phenix City Alabama plumbing contractor adjusting water pipe

Almost everyone at one time or another has needed the services of a professional plumber.  It may have been due to a leaky faucet or perhaps a hot water heater needed to be replaced.  Plumbers provide a valuable service for the maintenance of both commercial and residential buildings.  They are skilled tradesmen who are trained in the installation, repair and replacement of plumbing systems.  These systems include pipes, plumbing fixtures, water based heating and cooling, sewage removal and sprinklers.  A local Phenix City AL plumber will typically advance through three phases during their professional career.

  • Apprentice. The majority of Phenix City AL plumbers begin their careers as an Apprentice.  Apprenticeships are often completed in tandem with a formalized plumbing training program.  Apprentices are typically paid but unlicensed and work under the guidance of a licensed plumber during working hours and attend plumber training classes at night.  The second phase of their career begins once the apprenticeship and the training program have been completed.
  • Journeyman Plumber. Once the apprenticeship has been completed as well as any required training program, application for Journeyman Plumber licensing can be made.  Most often licensing is controlled by the state but can be managed more locally at the county or city level.  A Journeyman license will only be issued after all requirements have been met, including a passing score on the licensing exam. Even though a Journeyman is more knowledgeable and experienced than an Apprentice, they generally must continue to be supervised, in this case by a Master Plumber.
  • Master Plumber. After attaining the necessary work experience and completing any additional educational requirements, the Journeyman can apply to become a Master Plumber.  Once again a passing score must be achieved on the licensing exam before a license will be issued.  There are several benefits to advancing to the Master Plumber level, including earnings at the highest pay level, unsupervised working conditions, and the ability to start and own a business.  Master Plumbers may also hire and supervise both Journeymen and Apprentices.

As a technical field requiring a high level of skill and competence, plumbing can take years of both training and experience to master.  As a consequence, the best opportunity for success for a new Apprentice in Phenix City AL is to enroll in a plumbing technology program that will provide the comprehensive quality training needed to embark on this challenging career.

Plumber Certificate and Degree Options

There are several educational options available near Phenix City AL to receive the necessary training to begin your career as a plumber.  As far as the schools offering programs, you can enroll in a trade, technical or vocational school as well as a local community college.  The programs offered will vary, but in general the shortest is the certificate program which will focus on the fundamentals and generally take about a year to complete.  An Associate Degree will take 2 years to complete and will provide a more comprehensive education.  There are some colleges that do offer a Bachelor Degree in plumbing technology, which are 4 year programs and much broader in nature.  When choosing a school and program, naturally the completion time and the cost will be important factors.  Tuition can vary significantly among the various schools and colleges and for some private schools can be quite expensive.  State schools and community colleges typically offer their programs at the lower end of the tuition scale.  However, when making your comparisons, keep in mind that many schools offer financial aid and even scholarships to help offset some of the financial burden.  So be sure to find out what is available for each school and program before making your final decision.

What to Ask Plumber Training Schools

Phenix City Alabama plumber replacing hot water heater

When you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to refine your school options. Because there are numerous plumbing trade and vocational schools in the Phenix City AL area, it's important to have a checklist of criteria that each program must satisfy. The initial two that we mentioned were location and tuition expense. And although both qualifiers may be crucial when making your selection, there are other factors that must be considered also. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess before enrolling in a plumber vocational school.

Is the Plumbing School Accredited?  Numerous plumbing vocational programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school's programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, such as electrical technology. Make sure that the Phenix City AL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency, for instance the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping make certain that you acquire an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Additionally, many states require that the plumbing training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing or certification.

Is the Plumbing School Licensed?  In addition to accreditation, an additional way of confirming that a trade school you’re reiewing is reputable is by making sure that it’s properly licensed.  Licensing is typically regulated and controlled 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 check to ensure 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 Phenix City 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 training programs you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and complete the program. A lower completion rate could indicate that students were dissatisfied with the course and dropped out. It could also suggest that the teachers were not qualified 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 more extensive directory of alumni, which can result in more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has an excellent reputation within the industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or jobs in the Phenix City AL area.

Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored?  Most plumber trade programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of plumbing contractors or trade unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have referring relationships with local Phenix City AL plumbers or plumbing specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the area plumbing professional community.

Are there Modern Facilities?  Make sure that the school facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be using on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the master plumber you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Phenix City AL plumbing contracting company if they can give you some tips.

Where is the School Located?  Unless you can move, the school must be within driving distance of your Phenix City AL home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there may be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Are there Smaller Classes?  It's desirable that you get as much one-on-one training as possible, which can be challenging in larger classes. Ask if you can monitor a couple of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between teachers and students. Talk with several of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is in Phenix City AL and what degrees or certifications they have earned.

Is the Class Schedule Convenient?  Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Phenix City AL, check that the schools you are reviewing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

Find Out More About Phenix City Plumbing Training Schools

Enroll in the Best Phenix City Plumber Trade School

Picking the ideal plumber training program will probably be the most important decision you will make to start your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are several factors that you will need to assess and compare between the schools you are looking at. It's a necessity that any plumbing training that you are considering includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student must have their personal equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to offer a real-world frame of reference, and the training program should be up-to-date and conform with industry standards. Courses vary in duration and the type of credential offered, so you will need to decide what length of program and degree or certificate will best fulfill your needs. Every training program provides different possibilities for certification as well. Probably The ideal means to research your final list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Invest some time to sit in on a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the school you select is the right one for you. With the proper training, effort and commitment, you can become a professional plumber in Phenix City AL.