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How to Select the Best Plumber Tech School near Anthem Arizona

Anthem Arizona plumbing contractor installing kitchen faucetThe initial step to learning to be a plumbing contractor or tradesman is locating a plumbing trade school near Anthem AZ. But with numerous vocational schools to pick from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the right one? Especially because there are so many variables to examine. For instance, some prospective students will start by looking for schools that are nearby their residence. After they have identified several that are within commuting distance, they will select the one with the least expensive tuition. While location and cost are important, they are not the sole things that need to be considered. Also important are the reputations of the schools, their accreditation, along with their graduation and job placement rates. These and other qualifiers should contribute toward your ultimate decision when choosing a plumber trade school. We will talk about that checklist in more detail later in this post. But first, let's review a little bit about becoming a plumber and the instructional options that are available.

What is a Plumber?

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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 Anthem AZ plumber will typically advance through three phases during their professional career.

  • Apprentice. The majority of Anthem AZ 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 Anthem AZ is to enroll in a plumbing technology program that will provide the comprehensive quality training needed to embark on this challenging career.

Plumber Degree and Certificate Options

There are several educational options available near Anthem AZ 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.

Topics to Ask Plumbing Training Schools

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Once you have made a decision to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to focus your school options. Since there are numerous plumbing vocational and trade schools in the Anthem AZ region, it's imperative to have a checklist of criteria that each program must satisfy. The initial 2 that we discussed were location and the cost of tuition. And even though both qualifiers may be crucial when making your selection, there are other factors that must be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifications that you will need to research before choosing a plumber vocational school.

Is the Plumbing School Accredited?  Numerous plumbing trade schools have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school's programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which relates to a specific program, for example electrical technology. Make certain that the Anthem AZ program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you get an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often unavailable for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, many states mandate that the plumbing training course be accredited for it to qualify for certification or licensing.

Is the Plumbing School Licensed?  Along with accreditation, an additional way of determining if a trade school you’re considering is reputable is by checking that it’s properly licensed.  Licensing is typically regulated and controlled by state agencies, such as the Arizona Department of Education.  If you don’t know, 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 Anthem AZ 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 program. A low completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It may also signify that the instructors were not competent to train 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 graduates, which can result in more contacts for the school to employ for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate will not only affirm that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to help students secure apprenticeships or jobs in the Anthem AZ area.

Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored?  Most plumber trade programs are taught in conjunction with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of plumbing businesses or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have referring partnerships with local Anthem AZ plumbers or plumbing contractors. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the area plumbing professional community.

Are there Modern Facilities?  Make sure that the campus 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, check with the master plumber you are working with regarding what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Anthem AZ 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 Anthem AZ residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Are there Smaller Classes?  It's desirable that you get as much individualized 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 see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to a few of the students and get their opinions relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is in Anthem AZ and what degrees or certifications they hold.

Is the Class Schedule Convenient?  Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Anthem AZ, verify that the programs you are considering offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family issues.

Find Out More About Anthem Plumbing Training Schools

Pick the Right Anthem Plumber Training School

Selecting the best plumbing training program will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new profession. As we have covered in this article, there are several things that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are considering. It's a necessity that any plumber tech school that you are reviewing includes a considerable amount of hands-on training. Classes need to be smaller in size and every student should have their own equipment to train with. Classroom teaching needs to offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Programs differ in duration and the kind of credential provided, so you will have to ascertain what length of program and credential will best fulfill your needs. Every program offers unique possibilities for certification also. Probably The ideal means to research your short list of schools is to check out each campus and talk with the students and instructors. Take the time to monitor a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the program you select is the ideal one for you. With the right training, effort and dedication, you can become a professional plumber in Anthem AZ.