Plumbers typically enter the profession through apprenticeship opportunities, which incorporate on-the-job training with classroom instruction. Students may consider enrolling in diploma, certificate or associate degree programs designed to provide the classroom hours of an apprenticeship program.
10 Schools with Plumbing Technology Programs
These schools offer plumbing technology programs at varying levels, and many offer hands-on training and apprenticeships.
|College/University||Location||Institution Type||Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees 2015-2016*|
|Kirkwood Community College||Cedar Rapids, IA||2-year, Public||Diploma||$4,194 in-state, $5,034 out-of-state|
|Jefferson Community and Technical College||Louisville, KY||2-year, Public||Certificate, Diploma||$3,704 in-state, $12,536 out-of-state|
|El Paso Community College||El Paso, TX||2-year, Public||Certificate||$2,386 in-state, $4,042 out-of-state|
|Wake Technical Community College||Raleigh, NC||2-year, Public||Certificate, Diploma||$2,768 in-state, $8,912 out-of-state|
|Houston Community College||Houston, TX||2-year, Public||Certificate||$1,632 in-district, $3,360 in-state, $3,756 out-of-state|
|Washington County Community College||Calais, ME||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,630 in-state, $7,058 out-of-state|
|GateWay Community College||Phoenix, AZ||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$2,046 in-state, $7,830 out-of-state|
|Los Angeles Trade Technical College||Los Angeles, CA||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$1,220 in-state, $7,016 out-of-state|
|Red Rocks Community College||Lakewood, CO||2-year, Public||Certificate||$3,429 in-state, $13,145 out-of-state|
|Macomb Community College||Warren, MI||2-year, Public||Certificate, Associate's||$3,169 in-district, $4,945 in-state, $6,641 out-of-state|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics
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School Selection Criteria
Students should keep these considerations in mind when choosing a school:
- Plumbers may specialize in one of five areas including pipe fitting, sprinkler fitting, pipe laying, steamfitting and residential plumbing.
- Diploma and certificate programs are in one of the five areas of specialization, while associate's degree programs feature coursework in all areas.
- Students should look for programs that offer up-to-date, on-campus laboratory training and off-campus professional opportunities for a comprehensive training program.
- Plumbing offered in conjunction with a construction program may appeal to students interested in construction by including courses in plumbing estimating and industry codes alongside courses such as carpentry and electrical systems.
Diploma in Plumbing Technology
Diploma programs in plumbing technology may be completed in approximately one year. Due to the streamlined nature of these shorter programs, diploma programs may focus specifically on one area of plumbing, such as pipefitting.
Certificate in Plumbing Technology
Certificate programs in plumbing technology focus on a broader range of academic concepts correlating with plumbing, including HVACR technology and construction.
Associate Degree in Plumbing Technology
Associate degree programs in plumbing technology can be completed in two years, and graduates may transfer directly into bachelor's degree programs.
Many technical and community colleges offer plumbing technology programs through their construction technology departments. Students should consider a program's laboratory training and specializations, as well as the possibility of a joint program in construction.