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The license itself is good for 10 years. Mr. Chiapparoli said that of the 18 students he certified in his class, 12 applied for the license.

“You get a wide variety of people,” Mr. Chiapparoli said. “It’s kind of a mixed bag. Some people are there to learn something. Other people are like, ‘Gimme the permit and I’m out of here.’”

When the class was asked why they were considering buying a gun, the answers ranged from protection to recreation to simply learning the basics of using firearms.

“Some people buy guns because it’s their right to buy guns,” Mr. Chiapparoli said.

Wayne Graham, 47, of Frederick, Md., said he enrolled in the class so he would have the license for a possible future gun purchase.

“It’s an important class,” he said. “We talked about safety and learned about the law. It was very interesting.”

Mr. Deleon, 23, of Wheaton, said he took the course for his future career.

“I’m looking to advance in asset protection,” he said. “Everything is pretty straight forward in the class.”

Jan Montgomery completed the course with her 82-year-old mother.

“She lives by herself,” Ms. Montgomery said. “We took the course because she wants a handgun. If we are going to buy a gun, we’ll be ready.”