Questions to Ask Plumbing Trade Schools
Once you have decided to earn a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to refine your school options. Because there are numerous plumbing tech and trade schools in the El Mirage AZ area, it's essential to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The first 2 that we mentioned were location and the cost of tuition. And while both qualifiers may be crucial when making your selection, there are additional factors that need to be considered also. Below is a checklist of those added qualifications that you will need to analyze prior to choosing a plumber technical school.
Is the Plumbing School Accredited? Numerous plumbing technical schools have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can receive Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school's programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to a specific program, for instance electrical technology. Make sure that the El Mirage AZ school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education approved accrediting agency, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping make certain that you get a quality education, it can assist in securing financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, a number of states require that the plumbing training course be accredited for it to be approved for certification or licensing.
Is the Plumbing School Licensed? In addition to accreditation, another way of confirming that a vocational school you’re reiewing 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’re not sure, ask the school which state agency regulates 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 El Mirage 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 course. A low completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the program and quit. It could also mean that the instructors were not qualified to instruct the students. It's similarly imperative that the schools have higher job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader directory of graduates, which may produce 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 also that it has the network of contacts to help graduates obtain apprenticeships or employment in the El Mirage AZ area.
Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored? Numerous plumber trade programs are taught together with an internship or an apprenticeship program. Those participating vocational and trade programs will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of plumbing contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are reviewing have working relationships with local El Mirage AZ plumbers or plumbing companies. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by providing hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local plumbing professional community.
Are there Modern Facilities? Confirm that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using on the job. If you are presently 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 El Mirage AZ plumbing company if they can provide some pointers.
Where is the School Located? Unless you are able to relocate, the school must be within driving distance of your El Mirage AZ residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to relocation costs there might be increased tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Are there Smaller Classes? It's desirable that you get as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can see how large they are and witness first hand the interaction between instructors and students. Talk with some of the students and get their comments concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is in El Mirage AZ and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Is the Class Schedule Convenient? Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are assessing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near El Mirage AZ, confirm that the schools you are comparing provide those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family issues.