Points to Ask Plumbing Technical Schools
Once you have decided to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to focus your training options. Because there are so many plumbing vocational and trade schools in the Lake Havasu City AZ region, it's imperative to have a checklist of qualifications 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 must be taken into account as well. Below is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to assess before choosing a plumber trade school.
Is the Plumbing School Accredited? A large number of plumbing vocational schools have received either a regional or a national accreditation. They may receive Institutional Accreditation, which focuses on the school's programs as a whole, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, for example electrical technology. Verify that the Lake Havasu City AZ school and program are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, for example the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it can help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited programs. Also, some states mandate that the plumbing training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing or certification.
Is the Plumbing School Licensed? Along with accreditation, another way of determining if a trade school you’re reiewing is reputable is by checking that it’s properly licensed. Licensing is usually 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 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 Lake Havasu City 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 finish the program. A lower completion rate may signify that students were dissatisfied with the course and dropped out. It could also mean that the instructors were not qualified to train the students. It's also important that the schools have higher 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 validate that the school has a good reputation within the trade, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist students secure apprenticeships or employment in the Lake Havasu City AZ area.
Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored? Many plumber technical programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and trade schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of plumbing contractors or trade unions. Find out if the schools you are considering have referring relationships with local Lake Havasu City AZ plumbers or plumbing specialists. An apprenticeship not only provides a rewarding experience by supplying practical training, but it also supplies 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 currently 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 Lake Havasu City AZ plumbing company if they can provide some tips.
Where is the School Located? Unless you can relocate, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Lake Havasu City AZ residence. Take note that if you decide to enroll in an out-of-state school, besides the added relocation costs there might be higher tuition fees compared to in-state residents.
Are there Smaller Classes? It's important that you receive as much personalized instruction as possible, which can be challenging in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor some of the classes so that you can see how big they are and experience the interaction between students and teachers. Talk to several of the students and get their feedback relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, talk to some of the instructors and learn what their level of experience is in Lake Havasu City AZ and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Is the Class Schedule Convenient? Verify that the class schedules for the programs you are reviewing are flexible enough to meet your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Lake Havasu City AZ, confirm that the programs you are considering offer those options. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, make sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Finally, find out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family emergencies.