If you’ve always been interested in a career as an electrician – but unsure of where to start – we have some good news for you. There are just a few simple steps that will put you on your way to a rewarding future in this industry. Whether you are getting ready to graduate high school or you’re considering a career switch, knowing the basic steps can make it easier to get into this swiftly growing field.
1. Obtain a high school diploma or a similar accreditation – and consider your coursework.
If you have not yet completed your high school education, now is the perfect time to consider your coursework. Courses in topics that will help you down the road as an electrician might include higher level mathematics and physical sciences. Additionally, some schools offer electives that pertain to electrical work. Take advantage of these options.
If you do not yet have a high school diploma or a GED, start the process of obtaining one. An electrician must have at least a secondary education.
2. Research the role of an electrician.
Before you spend a significant amount of time or money becoming an electrician, do your homework. Researching the role of an electrician – especially how it is transforming in the modern era – is a smart idea. Bookmark websites that will help you learn more about the field, such as the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
3. Complete post-secondary education in the field.
Already done with high school by the time you read this article? It’s a good idea to take a few courses at your local technical college or vocational school to aid you in the field. Many of these schools happen to offer full programs in electrical work, which will be a significant boon to your career search and help you stand out from those competing for similar jobs.
4. Become an industry apprentice.
An apprenticeship is essential to becoming a full-fledged electrician in most states. Finding an industry-approved apprenticeship is easier through an organization such as the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The apprenticeship will teach you the fundamentals of the field in a classroom setting as well as enable you to obtain hands-on training with professional electricians.
5. Get your electrician’s license.
Whether or not you’ll have to obtain a license to start working as an electrician depends on where you are living and working. States set their own standards for what is required, as do cities. It’s a good idea to look into this ahead of time, and find out what is required for licensure in your state and municipality. Be aware that an exam, or multiple exams, might also be involved.
The time it takes to become an electrician varies, but plan on spending at least a few years taking courses and completing an apprenticeship. To further research and understand the vital role of electricians in the present and future – and determine how you can contribute to this field – visit the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers at IBEW.org.
Local Union 278
Corpus Christi, TX 78417
WHO WE ARE
Local 278 is a part of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) represents approximately 725,000 members who work in a wide variety of fields, including utilities, construction, telecommunications, broadcasting, manufacturing, railroads and government. The IBEW has members in both the United States and Canada and stands out among the American unions in the AFL-CIO because it is among the largest and has members in so many skilled occupations.
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