What Is an Electrician Apprenticeship Program?

Read on to find more information about electrician apprenticeship programs, which allow you to earn a paycheck while you're training in the trade. Get info on what you'd learn as an electrician apprentice. Schools offering Electrician degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Electrician Apprenticeship Defined

An electrician apprenticeship is a paid training program in which you work under the guidance of a professional electrician to learn the trade. Apprenticeship programs include hands-on experience and classroom instruction. You might spend up to four years completing an apprenticeship program. For every year you are an apprentice, you will complete a minimum of 2,000 hours training on the job and 144 hours taking classes, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Apprenticeship (www.doleta.gov).

Important Facts About Being An Electrician

Average Salary (As of May 2018)$55,190
Job Outlook (2016-2026)9% (Average)
Key SkillsBusiness skills
Physical strength
Color vision
Trouble shooting skills
Work EnvironmentDepending on the project, electricians can work indoors and outdoors. You can work in homes, businesses, and factories.

*Source:U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Apprenticeship Requirements

The prerequisites for apprenticeships can vary by organization. Normally, you will need at least a high school diploma or GED, and you must be at least 18 years of age. You may need to have some algebra courses, and you may be required to pass a drug test. You might also be given an aptitude test to make sure you are qualified for the training.

What You'll Learn

During the apprenticeship program, you will learn how to install outlets, wiring and conduits. In the classroom, you will cover topics like electrical theory, safety regulations, electrical code compliance and blueprint reading. At the end of the program, you will be ready to take your state electrician licensure exam and work in electrical maintenance and construction.

Finding a Program

Professional trade associations and union organizations, such as the National Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (NJATC), the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), sponsor many electrician apprenticeship programs. Electrical contractors and schools may also offer apprenticeships. Contact local unions, electrical contractors and training centers to find apprenticeships available near you.

Electrical Specialties

In an apprenticeship program, you may have your choice of specialization areas. In the outside lineman specialization, you will learn how to install outside lines that move power from the original source to businesses, factories and residences. If you choose a residential specialization, you will install wiring in homes. Inside wiremen focuses on industrial and commercial properties.

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