How to Select a Welder Certification Class near Ogden Utah
Finding the right welder technical school near Ogden UT is an essential first step to starting your new career as a professional welder. But since there are numerous schools to pick from, how do you know which ones to consider? And more significantly, once you have narrowed down your alternatives, how do you pick the best one? Many people begin by looking at the schools that are closest to their homes. Once they have identified those that are within driving distance, they gravitate toward the least costly one. Yes, location and tuition cost are necessary issues when reviewing welding vocational schools, but they are not the only ones. Other factors include such things as reputation, accreditation and job placement rates. So before initiating your search for a trade school to become a welder, it’s sensible to create a list of qualifications that your chosen school must have. But before we delve into our due diligence checklist, let’s cover a little bit about how to become a welder.
Welding Degree and Certificate Training
There are several options to receive training as a welder in a trade or technical school. You can receive a diploma, a certificate or an Associate Degree. Bachelor Degrees are available in Welding Technology or Welding Engineering, but are more advanced programs than most journeyman welders will need. Some programs are also made available in conjunction with an apprenticeship program. Following are brief descriptions of the most common welding programs offered near Ogden UT.
- Certificate and Diploma Programs are usually made available by Ogden UT area technical and trade schools and require about one year to finish. They are more hands-on training in nature, designed largely to develop welding skills. They can furnish a good foundation for a new journeyman or apprentice welder, or specialized skills for experienced welders.
- Associate Degree Programs will take 2 years to finish and are usually offered by Utah community colleges. An Associate Degree in Welding Technology offers a more well-rounded education than the certificate or diploma while still providing the foundation that readies students to enter the workforce.
Some municipalities and states do have licensing requirements for welders, therefore make sure to find out for your location of potential employment. If required, the welding school you choose should prep you for any licensing exams that you will need to take in addition to furnishing the appropriate training to become a professional welder in Ogden UT.
Welder Certification Choices
There are multiple organizations that offer welding certifications, which test the skill level and knowledge of those applying. Many Ogden UT employers not only expect a certificate or degree from an accredited welding school, but also certification from a highly regarded organization like the American Welding Society (AWS). A wide range of certifications are available based upon the type of work that the welder performs. A few of the things that certification can attest to are the welder’s ability to
- Operate in compliance with specific codes
- Work with specific metal thicknesses
- Work with various kinds of welds
- Operate according to contract specifications
As earlier stated, various states, cities or local municipalities have licensing requirements for welders. Of those requiring licensing, some additionally require certification for various types of work. Certification is also a means to demonstrate to Ogden UT employers that you are an extremely skilled and experienced welder. So just as with licensing, look into the requirements for your local area and confirm that the welding technical school you decide on readies you for certification as needed.
Online Welder Training Programs
Welding is truly a manual kind of vocation, and therefore not extremely suitable for online training. Having said that, there are a few online welding courses offered by various community colleges and trade schools that may count toward a certificate or degree program. These classes mainly cover such subjects as safety, reading blueprints, and metallurgy. They can help give a novice a basis to start their training and education. However, the most important point is that you can’t learn how to weld or handle welding materials until you actually do it. Naturally that can’t be performed online. These skills must be learned in an on-campus environment or in an apprenticeship near Ogden UT. Online or distance learning is better suited for seasoned welders that want to advance their knowledge or possibly attain a more advanced degree. So if you should discover an online welding degree or certificate program, be extremely careful and verify that the greater part of the training is done on campus or in a workshop type of setting.
How to Decide on a Welding Technical Program
When you have decided on the credential you want to attain, a certificate, diploma or degree, you can begin to compare schools. As you are no doubt aware, there are a large number of welding vocational and trade schools in the Ogden UT area. That’s why it’s essential to establish in advance what qualifications your school of choice must have. We have already covered two important ones that most people consider first, which are location and tuition cost. As mentioned, although they are essential qualifications, they are not the only ones that need to be looked at. After all, the school you select is going to furnish the instruction that will be the foundation of your new profession as a welder. So following are more factors you may need to consider before choosing a welder technical school.
Accreditation. It’s very important that the Ogden UT welder tech school you choose is accredited by either a regional or a national organization. There are 2 basic types of accreditation. The school may earn Institutional Accreditation based on all of their programs. Programmatic Accreditation is based on a single program the school offers, for example Welding Technology. So verify that the program you select is accredited, not just the school alone. Also, the accreditation should be by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, for example the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT). In addition to helping ensure that you receive a superior education, the accreditation can also help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are in many cases unavailable for non-accredited schools. Also, for those states or municipalities that mandate licensing, they may require that the welder training program be accredited also.
Apprenticeship and Job Placement Programs. Numerous welder certificate or degree programs are provided combined with an apprenticeship program. Other schools will assist in placing you in a job or an apprenticeship after graduation. Find out if the schools you are reviewing help in placing students in apprenticeships or have a job placement program. The schools should have relationships with local unions and other Ogden UT metal working businesses to which they can place their students. More established schools may have a more substantial network of graduates that they can rely upon for placements. These programs can help students find employment and establish associations within the local welding community.
Job Placement and Completion Rates. The completion rate is the percentage of students that start an educational program and complete it. It’s important that the welding school you pick has a high completion rate. A reduced rate may signify that the students who were in the program were unhappy with the instruction, the teachers, or the facilities, and quit. The job placement rate is also a good indicator of the caliber of training. A higher job placement rate will not only confirm that the program has an excellent reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of Ogden UT employer relationships to assist students secure employment or apprenticeships after graduation.
Modern Equipment and Facilities. Once you have decreased your selection of welder schools to two or three options, you should consider visiting the campuses to evaluate their facilities. Verify that both the facilities and the equipment that you will be trained on are modern. In particular, the training equipment should be comparable to what you will be working with in the field. If you are not sure what to look for, and are currently in an apprenticeship program, ask the master welder you are working under for guidance. If not, ask a local Ogden UT welding contractor if they can give you some suggestions.
School Location. Even though we previously briefly covered the importance of location, there are a couple of additional points that we need to deal with. You should remember that unless you are able to move, the welding school you pick must be within driving distance of your Ogden UT home. If you do decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving expenses there could be higher tuition fees for out-of-state residents. This is especially the case for welding certificate programs offered by community colleges. Additionally, if the school provides an apprenticeship or job placement program, most likely their placements are within the school’s regional community. So the location of the school should be in a region or state where you subsequently will want to work.
Small Classes. Personalized instruction is important for a hands-on trade such as welding. It’s easy to be overlooked in larger classes and not get much one-on-one instruction. Ask what the average class size is for the welder schools you are reviewing. Ask if you can sit in on some classes so that you can experience just how much personal attention the students are getting. While there, speak with some of the students and get their feedback. Also, talk to a couple of the teachers and ask what their welding experience has been and what certifications and credentials they hold.
Flexible Class Schedules. Lots of folks learn a new profession while still working at their present job. Make sure that the class schedules for the programs you are considering are convenient enough to satisfy your needs. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Ogden UT, verify that the schools you are considering offer those alternatives. If you can only attend part-time, verify that the school you choose offers part-time enrollment. Also, check to see what the policy is to make up classes if you you miss any due to illness, work or family responsibilities.
Being a Welder in Ogden UT
Ogden /ˈɒɡdɛn/ is a city and the county seat of Weber County,Utah, United States, approximately 10 miles (16 km) east of the Great Salt Lake and 40 miles (64 km) north of Salt Lake City. The population was 84,316 in 2014, according to the US Census Bureau, making it Utah's 7th largest city. The city served as a major railway hub through much of its history, and still handles a great deal of freight rail traffic which makes it a convenient location for manufacturing and commerce. Ogden is also known for its many historic buildings, proximity to the Wasatch Mountains, and as the location of Weber State University.
Ogden is a principal city of the Ogden–Clearfield, Utah Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Weber, Morgan, Davis, and Box Elder counties. The 2010 Census placed the Metro population at 597,159. In 2010, Forbes rated the Ogden-Clearfield MSA as the 6th best place to raise a family. Ogden has had a sister city relationship to Hof (Germany) since 1954.
Originally named Fort Buenaventura, the city of Ogden was the first permanent settlement by people of European descent in the region that is now Utah. It was established by the trapper Miles Goodyear in 1846 about a mile west of where downtown Ogden is currently located. In November 1847 all of the land now comprising Weber County together with some livestock and Fort Buenaventura was purchased by Captain James Brown for $3,000. The land was conveyed to Captain Brown in a Mexican Land Grant, this area being at that time a part of Mexico. The settlement was then called Brownsville, after Captain James Brown, but was later named Ogden for a brigade leader of the Hudson's Bay Company, Peter Skene Ogden, who had trapped in the Weber Valley a generation earlier. There is some confusion in which "Ogden" was the first to set foot in the Utah city. A Samuel Ogden traveled though the western United States on an exploration trip in 1818. The site of the original Fort Buenaventura is now a Weber County park.
Ogden is the closest sizable city to the Golden Spike location at Promontory Summit, Utah, where the First Transcontinental Railroad was joined in 1869. Ogden was known as a major passenger railroad junction owing to its location along major east–west and north–south routes, prompting the local chamber of commerce to adopt the motto, "You can't get anywhere without coming to Ogden." Railroad passengers traveling west to San Francisco from the eastern United States typically passed through Ogden (and not through the larger Salt Lake City to the south). Ogden, however, is no longer served by Amtrak, the national passenger rail system, and passengers desiring to travel from Ogden by rail must travel via FrontRunner commuter rail to Salt Lake City and Provo.
Find the Right Welding Technical Program Ogden UT
Picking the right welder school will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to begin your new trade. As we have addressed in this article, there are a number of things that you will need to examine and compare among the programs you are reviewing. It’s a necessity that any welder training that you are reviewing includes a good deal of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student should have their personal welding machine to train on. Classroom education should offer a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and conform with industry standards. Programs vary in duration and the kind of credential offered, so you will need to decide what length of program and credential will best serve your needs. Each program provides unique options for certification also. Perhaps the best approach to research your final list of schools is to visit each campus and speak with the teachers and students. Take the time to monitor a few classes. Tour the campus and facilities. Make certain that you are confident that the training program you pick is the right one for you. With the proper training, hard work and dedication, the final result will be a new career as a professional welder in Ogden UT.