As U.S. construction increases over the next decade, jobs for electricians will grow at an above-average rate, states the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. If you’re interested in joining the ranks of electrical professionals, your best bet is to go through apprenticeships.
Although training qualifications vary slightly by location, you typically need to be at least 18 years old, have a high-school diploma, and pass both aptitude and drug tests. For each year of the four-year apprenticeship, expect at least 144 hours of tech education and 2,000 hours of job experience under the watchful eye of professionals. As a bonus, you get paid throughout your learning period. Your wage is a percentage of the journey-level compensation but will increase over time.
Another option is to start with technical courses at a community college or trade school. You’ll have to pay for the education but your college credits can often apply toward apprenticeships.
Your training may offer you the option of specializing in such specialty occupations as the following:
- Residential wiremen handle the electrical systems in single- and multi-family homes.
- Inside wiremen focus on the electrical equipment in industrial and commercial structures.
- Outside linemen work on the cables that carry electricity from power plants to homes, businesses and factories.
However you learn, you may need a license, depending on the state in which you work. To maintain your job, you may also need continuing education courses to keep up-to-date on the latest technology and safety practices.
For more information on becoming an electrician, contact us.
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