How to Enroll in the Right Plumbing Vocational School near Galena Alaska
The first step to becoming a plumbing contractor or tradesman is enrolling in a plumbing school near Galena AK. But with so many vocational schools to pick from, just how do you undertake making certain that you enroll in the right one? Particularly since there are so many points to consider. For instance, some prospective students will commence by searching for schools that are close to their residence. After they have located a few that are within driving distance, they will choose the one with the lowest tuition. While cost and location are of importance, they are not the only things that should be considered. Also important are the accreditation and reputations of the schools, as well as their job placement and graduation rates. These and other qualifications should contribute toward your final decision when picking a plumbing training school. We will talk about that checklist in greater detail later in this article. But first, let’s talk a little bit about becoming a plumber and the educational choices that are available.
Becoming a Plumber
Almost everyone at one time or another has needed the services of a professional plumber. It may have been due to a leaky faucet or perhaps a hot water heater needed to be replaced. Plumbers provide a valuable service for the maintenance of both commercial and residential buildings. They are skilled tradesmen who are trained in the installation, repair and replacement of plumbing systems. These systems include pipes, plumbing fixtures, water based heating and cooling, sewage removal and sprinklers. A local Galena AK plumber will typically advance through three phases during their professional career.
- Apprentice. The majority of Galena AK plumbers begin their careers as an Apprentice. Apprenticeships are often completed in tandem with a formalized plumbing training program. Apprentices are typically paid but unlicensed and work under the guidance of a licensed plumber during working hours and attend plumber training classes at night. The second phase of their career begins once the apprenticeship and the training program have been completed.
- Journeyman Plumber. Once the apprenticeship has been completed as well as any required training program, application for Journeyman Plumber licensing can be made. Most often licensing is controlled by the state but can be managed more locally at the county or city level. A Journeyman license will only be issued after all requirements have been met, including a passing score on the licensing exam. Even though a Journeyman is more knowledgeable and experienced than an Apprentice, they generally must continue to be supervised, in this case by a Master Plumber.
- Master Plumber. After attaining the necessary work experience and completing any additional educational requirements, the Journeyman can apply to become a Master Plumber. Once again a passing score must be achieved on the licensing exam before a license will be issued. There are several benefits to advancing to the Master Plumber level, including earnings at the highest pay level, unsupervised working conditions, and the ability to start and own a business. Master Plumbers may also hire and supervise both Journeymen and Apprentices.
As a technical field requiring a high level of skill and competence, plumbing can take years of both training and experience to master. As a consequence, the best opportunity for success for a new Apprentice in Galena AK is to enroll in a plumbing technology program that will provide the comprehensive quality training needed to embark on this challenging career.
Plumbing Certificate and Degree Programs
There are several educational options available near Galena AK to receive the necessary training to begin your career as a plumber. As far as the schools offering programs, you can enroll in a trade, technical or vocational school as well as a local community college. The programs offered will vary, but in general the shortest is the certificate program which will focus on the fundamentals and generally take about a year to complete. An Associate Degree will take 2 years to complete and will provide a more comprehensive education. There are some colleges that do offer a Bachelor Degree in plumbing technology, which are 4 year programs and much broader in nature. When choosing a school and program, naturally the completion time and the cost will be important factors. Tuition can vary significantly among the various schools and colleges and for some private schools can be quite expensive. State schools and community colleges typically offer their programs at the lower end of the tuition scale. However, when making your comparisons, keep in mind that many schools offer financial aid and even scholarships to help offset some of the financial burden. So be sure to find out what is available for each school and program before making your final decision.
What to Ask Plumbing Vocational Schools
Once you have decided to obtain a diploma, certificate or degree, you can start to focus your school options. Considering that there are so many plumbing tech and trade schools in the Galena AK area, it’s important to have a checklist of qualifications that each school must meet. The initial two that we talked about were location and the cost of tuition. And while both qualifiers may be critical when making your selection, there are other factors that need to be considered as well. Following is a checklist of those additional qualifiers that you will need to analyze prior to choosing a plumber trade school.
Is the Plumbing School Accredited? A large number of plumbing trade programs have attained either a regional or a national accreditation. They may attain Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as electrical technology. Make certain that the Galena AK program and school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization, such as the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Along with helping ensure that you acquire an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, many states mandate that the plumbing training program be accredited for it to be approved for certification or licensing.
Is the Plumbing School Licensed? Along with accreditation, an additional way of determining if 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 Alaska Department of Education. If you don’t know, ask the school which state agency is responsible for 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 Galena AK 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 percentage or portion of students who enroll in and complete the program. A low completion rate may indicate that students were disappointed with the course and quit. It might also mean that the teachers were not competent to instruct 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 list of graduates, which can produce more contacts for the school to utilize for their apprenticeship and job placement programs. A high job placement rate can not only validate that the school has a good reputation within the field, but also that it has the network of contacts to assist students secure apprenticeships or jobs in the Galena AK area.
Are Apprenticeship Programs Sponsored? Numerous plumber trade programs are taught together with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating technical and vocational schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of plumbing contractors or labor unions. Check if the schools you are comparing have referring partnerships with local Galena AK plumbers or plumbing specialists. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by supplying hands-on training, but it also supplies job opportunities and helps to build relationships in the local plumbing professional community.
Are there Modern Facilities? Make sure that the campus facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be using on the job. If you are already in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the master plumber you are working under regarding what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Galena AK plumbing contractor if they can give you some tips.
Where is the School Located? Unless you are able to move, the school needs to be within commuting distance of your Galena AK residence. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, in addition to moving costs there may be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Are there Smaller Classes? It’s desirable that you receive as much one-on-one instruction as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can sit in on a couple of the classes so that you can observe how big they are and experience the interaction between students and instructors. Speak to some of the students and get their comments relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak with some of the instructors and find out what their level of experience is in Galena AK and what degrees or certifications they hold.
Is the Class Schedule Convenient? Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to fulfill your needs. If you are only able to go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Galena AK, confirm that the programs you are looking at provide those choices. If you can only attend part-time, be sure that the school you select permits part-time enrollment. Also, check out what the policy is to make-up classes should you miss any because of work, illness or family emergencies.
Plumber Vocational Training Galena Alaska
Picking the ideal plumbing training program will undoubtedly be the most critical decision you will make to start your new career. You originally came to this website because of your interest in Plumber Vocational Training and wanting more information on the topic Plumbing Technology School. But as we have addressed in this article, there are many things that you will need to assess and compare among the schools you are considering. It’s a prerequisite that any plumber tech school that you are evaluating includes a considerable amount of hands-on instruction. Classes need to be smaller in size and each student must have their own equipment to train with. Classroom education needs to provide a real-world perspective, and the training program should be current and in-line with industry standards. Training programs vary in length and the type of credential offered, so you will need to ascertain what length of program and certificate or degree will best satisfy your needs. Each program offers different options for certification as well. Probably The ideal means to research your short list of schools is to go to each campus and speak with the faculty and students. Take the time to monitor a few classes. Inspect the campus and facilities. Make sure that you are confident that the school you decide on is the ideal one for you. With the right training, hard work and commitment, you can become a professional plumber in Galena AK.
More Plumbing School Locations in Alaska
Galena (/ɡəˈliːnə/) (Notaalee Denh in Koyukon) is a city in the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area in the U.S. state of Alaska. At the 2010 census the population was 470, with a 2016 estimate of 488 inhabitants. Galena was established in 1918, and a military airfield was built adjacent to the city during World War II. The city was incorporated in 1971.
The Koyukon Athabascans had seasonal camps in the area and moved as the wild game migrated. In the summer many families floated on rafts to the Yukon River to fish for salmon. There were 12 summer fish camps located on the Yukon River between the Koyukuk River and the Nowitna River. Galena was established in 1918 near an Athabascan fish camp called Henry's Point. It became a supply and point for nearby lead ore mines that opened in 1918 and 1919, and from which the place takes its name.
In 1941 and 1942, during World War II, a military air field was built adjacent to the civilian airport, and the two facilities shared the runway and flight line facilities. This air field was designated Galena Air Force Station shortly after the split of the United States Air Force from the United States Army, which occurred as a result of the National Security Act of 1947. During the 1950s, the construction of additional military facilities at Galena and the nearby Campion Air Force Station, in support of Galena's mission as a forward operating base under the auspices of the 5072nd Air Base Group, headquartered at Elmendorf Air Force Base, near Anchorage, provided improvements to the airport and the local infrastructure, causing economic growth for the area.