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Questions to Ask Plumber Vocational Schools

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Now that you have made a decision to obtain a diploma, certificate or degree, you can begin to refine your training options. Considering that there are numerous plumbing tech and trade schools in the Green Valley AZ area, it's important to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must satisfy. The first two that we talked about were location and tuition expense. And while both qualifiers may be critical when making your selection, there are other variables that need to be considered also. Following is a checklist of those added qualifications that you will need to analyze prior to choosing a plumber tech school.

Is the Plumbing School Accredited?  A large number of plumbing vocational programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school's programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Make sure that the Green Valley AZ program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping ensure that you get a superior education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Additionally, many states require that the plumbing training program be accredited in order to qualify for licensing or certification.

Is the Plumbing School Licensed?  Along with accreditation, an additional way of confirming that a vocational school you’re reiewing is reputable is by making sure that it’s properly licensed.  Licensing is usually regulated and controlled by state agencies, such as the Arizona Department of Education.  If you don’t know, 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 Green Valley 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 training programs you are reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate might signify that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It might also indicate that the teachers were not qualified to train the students. It's similarly imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a more extensive directory of alumni, which may result in more contacts for the school to use 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 industry, but also that it has the network of contacts to help students obtain apprenticeships or employment in the Green Valley AZ area.

Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored?  Numerous plumber trade programs are taught together 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 businesses or labor unions. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have working partnerships with local Green Valley AZ plumbers or plumbing specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a valuable experience by providing practical training, but it also furnishes job opportunities and helps to establish relationships in the local plumbing professional community.

Are there Modern Facilities?  Confirm that the school facilities and the equipment that you will be instructed on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with on the job. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, talk to the master plumber you are working under concerning what you should be expecting. If not, ask a local Green Valley AZ plumbing contracting company if they can give you some tips.

Where is the School Located?  Unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Green Valley AZ home. Remember that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be increased tuition fees compared to in-state residents.

Are there Smaller Classes?  It's important that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can observe how large they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to a few of the students and get their feedback regarding class sizes and instruction. Last, speak with some of the instructors and learn what their level of experience is in Green Valley AZ and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Is the Class Schedule Convenient?  Verify that the class schedules for the schools you are evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Green Valley AZ, confirm that the programs you are looking at provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, make sure that the school you select offers part-time enrollment. Additionally, find out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, illness or family responsibilities.

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