Offering education in the trades from experienced instructors
By Bonnie Adams, Managing Editor
West Boylston – As anyone who has ever found themselves with a major home or business repair involving plumbing, heat or similar trades, hiring the services of a trained professional is critical. Since 1946, the Peterson School’s mission is to ensure that its students receive the very best theory and hands-on training in state-of-the-art laboratories in these important and often-complicated fields.
There are three campuses – Woburn, Westwood, and its West Boylston facility, which opened last year. Students can take classes in the trades including construction supervisor, electrical, plumbing, steam engineering, fire alarm systems, gas heat, hoisting, locksmith, oil heat, facilities maintenance, OSHA, and wastewater treatment. The school’s instructors are senior licensed tradespeople, holding major operations and management positions in the largest commercial facilities in the New England area. All are also approved for training by the Division of Professional Licensure.
“We are a private, post-secondary vocational school with a student first approach,” Jim Reardon, the school’s owner and president said. “The first question we ask at each decision point is ‘how does this impact our students?’ We’re different because of the depth of our courses and the practical, real world experience brought to the classroom by both our instructors and our students.”
The school offers primarily evening courses, but also provides weekend courses, fulltime options, continuing education and courses for beginners.
“Many of our students are already employed – they just want to go onto the next level. So we try to make it as convenient as possible for them by offering different programs,” Reardon said.
“Students receive real world, practical training at Peterson School,” he added. “A great deal of education and skill is required in order to work effectively in their chosen trade or to take their state license exams.”
The school will also work with students to help them manage financing course payments as well.
“It’s important that they come out of their courses with no debt,” Reardon said. “We want them to have the skills that will allow them to start earning right away. And we don’t want them to have an onerous monthly loan payment.”
The Peterson School also facilitates the connection between employer and potential employee. ‘The Job Site’ section of www.petersonschool.com has numerous job listings from local companies and a search functionality where students can find other opportunities for them. Employers can post their jobs on The Job Site quickly, easily and online. The school also regularly hosts job fairs at each of the three locations.
Reardon noted that as many students progress and become certified in their fields, and ultimately reach a master level, where they can hire others to work for them.
“It’s really a wonderful path to entrepreneurship,” he said. “The opportunities in the trades right now are really only limited by an individual’s drive.”