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What to Ask Plumbing Technical Schools

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When you have made a decision to obtain a certificate, diploma or degree, you can start to focus your school options. Considering that there are so many plumbing vocational and trade schools in the Tempe AZ region, it's imperative to have a checklist of criteria that each program must meet. The initial 2 that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. And while both qualifiers may be important when making your decision, there are additional variables that need to be taken into account as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to research prior to choosing a plumber trade school.

Is the Plumbing School Accredited?  Numerous plumbing trade schools have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They can attain 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 Tempe AZ program is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you acquire a superior education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited programs. Furthermore, some states require that the plumbing training course be accredited for it to be approved for licensing or certification.

Is the Plumbing School Licensed?  Along with accreditation, another way of determining if a vocational school you’re considering is reputable is by making sure that it’s properly licensed.  Licensing is usually controlled and regulated 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 Tempe 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 reviewing what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the portion or percentage of students who enroll in and finish the course. A lower completion rate could indicate that students were unhappy with the program and quit. It could also mean that the instructors were not competent 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 more extensive list of alumni, which may mean 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 industry, but additionally that it has the network of contacts to assist graduates acquire apprenticeships or employment in the Tempe AZ area.

Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored?  Numerous plumber training programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program inside their network of plumbing companies or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are considering have working partnerships with local Tempe AZ plumbers or plumbing companies. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also provides job opportunities and helps to form relationships in the regional plumbing professional community.

Are there Modern Facilities?  Make certain that the campus facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are up-to-date and what you will be working with in the field. If you are currently in an internship or an apprenticeship, consult with the master plumber you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. Otherwise, ask a local Tempe AZ plumbing company if they can provide some suggestions.

Where is the School Located?  Unless you are willing to move, the school must be within commuting distance of your Tempe AZ home. Take note that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there might be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.

Are there Smaller Classes?  It's important that you receive as much personalized training as possible, which can be challenging in larger 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. Speak with several of the students and get their comments concerning class sizes and instruction. Last, talk with some of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is in Tempe AZ and what certifications or degrees they hold.

Is the Class Schedule Convenient?  Confirm that the class schedules for the schools you are assessing are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you are only able to attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Tempe AZ, confirm that the schools you are looking at offer those choices. If you can only attend on a part-time basis, be sure that the school you select allows part-time enrollment. Finally, check out what the protocol is to make-up classes should you miss any due to work, sickness or family emergencies.

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