How to Choose a Vocational School near Silver City New Mexico
Deciding to begin a new occupation and enroll in a vocational school near Silver City NM are serious decisions that will greatly affect your future career. But with numerous trade schools to pick from, just how do you go about locating the ideal one? Not only do you need to make certain that you will receive the extensive training necessary to be successful in your new occupation, but also that the school is reputable and well regarded. Many prospective students make the error of choosing a trade school just because the campus is nearest to their home or place of employment. Or they may gravitate to the one that charges the most affordable tuition. Of course the location and cost of the training are significant factors when assessing vocational school options, but they must not be the only ones. Other considerations including accreditation and the reputation of the schools are important also. So before you begin evaluating and comparing trade schools, you must know what questions to ask so you can get the information to make a final selection. We will review some of those questions later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at some of the vocation options that are available including the accessibility of online programs.
Vocational School Career Options near Silver City NM
There are a number of professions to pick from in vocational schools that offer rewarding and good paying careers. Maybe you have already chosen one that you have for years desired to pursue. For instance, perhaps you have always had fun working on your car and have considered utilizing that talent to earn a living as an automotive tech. Or maybe a relative has had a prosperous career in a certain vocation or trade and you would like to follow in his or her footsteps. Whatever your motivation is for going into a trade, there is probably a program offered that will give you the training that you need. Following is just a modest representation of the trade school programs that are available in the Silver City NM area.
- Automotive Technician
- Heating And Air Conditioning (HVAC) Tech
- Truck Driving
- Aircraft Maintenance Tech
- Lab Technician
- Construction Management
All programs will have varying completion times and costs depending on the vocation, credential earned and school. Many of the programs may be completed in a few weeks, while others will call for months or even two or more years of training. All of these aspects need to be taken into account prior to choosing a vocation and school.
Online Trade Schools
Trade Schools online have become more attractive with Silver City NM students and more and more accredited programs are being offered. While learning online is a very convenient and accessible way to earn a degree or certificate, it might not be the ideal option for every vocation or trade. For example, training to drive a tractor trailer is not something that you can accomplish online, nor is learning how to weld. These are skills that must be learned through hands on training and by doing it, not by reading about it or watching videos. But certain components of the training may be suitable for online education, such as learning driving and safety regulations for trucking schools or learning about metallurgy or how to read blueprints for welder schools. Some programs will blend online education with on campus practical training, for example for HVAC or plumbing schools. So it is very important to determine before choosing an online school for any vocation if there is an appropriate amount of practical training devoted to the curriculum. One way to help ensure that a trade school program is both appropriate for online studying and delivers comprehensive hands-on training is to verify that it’s accredited by a nationally recognized accrediting agency (more on accreditation later). For those trades that are suitable for training online, it can be a convenient way for individuals with time constraints to learn a new trade.
Concerns to Ask Trade Schools
After you have chosen the trade and type of certificate or degree that you wish to acquire, either on campus or online, you can start to limit your list of schools. As you are probably aware, there are many technical schools in the Silver City NM area and across the Country to choose from. That’s why it is essential to have a checklist of relevant qualifications when making school assessments. As previously mentioned in our opening paragraph, tuition and location will undoubtedly be the initial two variables you will consider. Following are some additional ones that you will want to research before enrolling in your school of choice.
Accredited. Many Silver City NM area technical programs have acquired either a regional or a national accreditation. They may acquire Institutional Accreditation, which involves the school’s programs overall, or Programmatic Accreditation, which pertains to an individual program, such as HVAC technology. Make sure that the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency, which includes the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. In addition to helping guarantee that you receive an excellent education, it can help in acquiring financial assistance or student loans, which are frequently unavailable for non-accredited schools. Furthermore, some states mandate that the training program be accredited for it to qualify for licensing where applicable.
How Long in Business? One clue to help evaluate the quality of a vocational school near Silver City NM is how long it has been in business. A negatively reviewed or a fly by night school normally will not be in business very long, so longevity is a big plus. On the other hand, even the best of schools had to begin from their opening day of training, so use it as one of several qualifiers.
Completion Rates. Ask the vocational schools you are considering what their completion rates are. The completion rate is the percentage of students who enroll in and finish the program. A low completion rate may indicate that students were disappointed with the course and dropped out. It might also suggest that the teachers were not qualified to instruct the students. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. Older and/or more reputable schools may have a broader list of alumni, which may result in more contacts for the school to utilize 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 grads obtain apprenticeships or jobs in the Silver City NM area.
Apprenticeship Programs. Many technical programs are taught along with an apprenticeship or an internship program. Those participating vocational and technical schools will help place you in an apprenticeship program within their network of companies or trade unions. Ask if the schools you are reviewing have referring relationships with Silver City NM area professionals in the field. An apprenticeship not only offers a valuable experience by furnishing hands-on training, but it also supplies employment opportunities and helps to build relationships in the regional professional community.
Modern Facilities. Confirm that the school facilities and the tools that you will be trained on are state-of-the-art and what you will be working with in the field. If you are presently in an internship or an apprenticeship, check with the technician you are working with concerning what you should be looking for. If not, ask a local Silver City NM contractor if they can provide some pointers. Also keep in mind that unless you are willing to move, the school must be within driving distance of your home. Remember that if you decide to attend an out-of-state school, besides the added moving costs there may be higher tuition charges compared to in-state residents.
Smaller Classes. It’s desirable that you receive as much individualized training as possible, which can be difficult in bigger classes. Ask if you can monitor a few of the classes so that you can see how big they are and witness first hand the interaction between students and instructors. Talk to a few of the students and get their feedback relating to class sizes and instruction. Finally, speak to a few of the teachers and learn what their level of experience is in New Mexico and what certifications or degrees they have earned.
Flexible Scheduling. Confirm that the class schedules for the programs you are evaluating are flexible enough to handle your needs. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Silver City NM, confirm that the schools you are considering provide those options. 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.
Considering a Trade School near Silver City NM?
If you are looking at a trade school near Silver City NM, following is some interesting and relevant information regarding the location of your future school campus that may help you in making your decision.
Silver City, New Mexico
Silver City is a town in Grant County, New Mexico, United States. It is the county seat and the home of Western New Mexico University. As of the 2010 census the population was 10,315. In 2015 the population was estimated to be 10,004.
The valley that is now the site of Silver City once served as an Apache campsite. With the arrival of the Spaniards, the area became known for its copper mining. After the American Civil War, a settlement developed and became known as "La Ciénega de San Vicente" (the Oasis of St. Vincent). With a wave of American prospectors, the pace of change increased, and Silver City was founded in the summer of 1870. The founding of the town occurred shortly after the discovery of silver ore deposits at Chloride Flat, on the hill just west of the farm of Captain John M. Bullard and his brother James. Following the silver strike, Captain Bullard laid out the streets of Silver City, and a bustling tent city quickly sprang to life. Although the trajectory of Silver City's development was to be different from the hundreds of other mining boom towns established during the same period, Captain Bullard himself never lived to see even the beginnings of permanence, as he was killed in a confrontation with Apache raiders less than a year later, on February 23, 1871.
The town's violent crime rate was substantial during the 1870s. However, Grant County Sheriff Harvey Whitehill was elected in 1874, and gained a sizable reputation for his abilities at controlling trouble. In 1875, Whitehill became the first lawman to arrest Billy the Kid, known at the time under the alias of Henry Antrim. Whitehill arrested him twice, both times for theft in Silver City (Sheriff Whitehill testified to the Justice of the Peace that he believed Henry Antrim did not do the actual stealing the second time arrested, but assisted in the hiding of the property stolen by Sombrero Jack. Whitehill would later claim that the young man was a likeable kid, whose stealing was a result more of necessity than criminality. His mother is buried in the town cemetery. In 1878, the town hired its first town marshal, "Dangerous Dan" Tucker, who had been working as a deputy for Whitehill since 1875. Butch Cassidy and his Wild Bunch were also reported to frequent the Silver City saloons in the late 1800s.
Select the Right Trade School
Selecting the ideal trade school near Silver City NM is a critical beginning toward a fulfilling career in the vocation of your choice. As we have discussed in this article, you need to choose a school and a degree or certificate program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the trade. Other things to look for are lots of hands-on training and state-of-the-art facilities. You need to visit each of the schools personally that you are most interested in to inspect the campus and speak with both the faculty and current students. Try to get a feel for the quality of the teaching and the interaction between them. Additionally, inquire about scheduling options and whether or not night or weekend classes are available if needed. And remember to ask about financial assistance and student loan options as well. If you ask the proper questions as we have laid out in our checklist for comparing schools, you’ll be able to filter your choices so that you can make an informed decision. With the right training, hard work and dedication, you can ultimately become a licensed professional in your chosen trade.
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