Deciding where to go to school can be overwhelming, but when it comes to locksmith programs, it can be helpful to keep in mind three important choices.
- Decide What Educational Path to Take
As an aspiring locksmith, you have two main options when it comes to fulfilling your career goals. One option is to become a locksmith apprentice, which means that you would pay a fee and have a background check done on you so that you can get your locksmith apprentice license. After that point you would be able to find a job with a locksmith company and train under the supervision of an experienced individual in the profession. You would learn most of your information through this means, until you have enough experience that you could demonstrate to your state government that you have enough know-how to become a full-fledged locksmith. You would then pay another licensing fee and show proof of your training so that you could get hired by a company or go into business for yourself. As an apprentice you would most likely earn a percentage of a typical professional’s salary, similar to what is done with carpenters and carpentry apprentices. Your other option is to go to a locksmith training school. These programs are generally relatively short – about four classes – and could take as little as two months to complete. Some programs are even offered online. Once you have graduated, you can show your certificate to the appropriate department within your state government and become a full-fledged locksmith right away, skipping the apprenticeship step.
- Choose a Method of Learning
There are a lot of different locksmith schools out there, each with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. The main decision you have to make is whether you want to go to school online or in person. Online programs use books and study aids, as well as technological communication (such as email and message boards) to instruct students about particular topics. You may be asked to access websites where you watch videos on how to make keys or repair locks. You might also be offered resources such as an online library or tutoring sessions. The benefit of online programs is that you can work at your own pace, as long as you take the required exams, and can sometimes save money on tuition. Some of these programs also don’t make you go through an application process, and all you have to do is enroll. The benefit of going to school in person, however, is that you will get to know your instructors better, will have more opportunities to ask questions, and can practice what you learn in the on-campus facilities. If you go to school online, you will be required to buy the tools and practice the proper methods and techniques on your own.
- Go to an Accredited School
In order to be confident in your education, you should only go to a school that has been accredited by an accrediting council. There are organization that accredit schools on both the regional and national level, and a school that has both is preferable. An accreditation demonstrates that the school has met rigorous standards for their educational programs and that the instruction you will be offered is credible and reliable. Also, employers are more likely to hire someone who went to an accredited institution.