Electrician Schools & Programs Hands-On Training to Power Your Career

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Electrician training is a unique blend of theory and practice, bringing together conceptual study of electrical systems and practical instruction under a certified electrician. Individuals interested in the field may choose from multiple academic and career prep avenues, attending either an electrician school or completing a formal apprenticeship through a professional association. Through both forms of training, students gain the technical and mechanical skills required to become an electrician or certified electrical technician. Learn more about how to become an electrician, program curriculum, apprenticeships, and the career outlook.

Top 2016-2017 Electrician Schools and Programs

Those interested in enrolling in a program that teaches the industry-specific skills they will need to kick-start a career as an electrician may want to look into electrician schools and programs. Through one of these programs, students will be able to learn how to install, maintain and repair electric power in various settings. To help students find the best program that meets their individual needs, we have ranked the best electrician schools and programs in the country based on our criteria. Explore the top electrician schools and programs below.

Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
1 East Mississippi Community College
99.84 78% 5 12:1 27%

Program outcomes of East Mississippi Community College's Associate of Applied Science in Electrical Technology program include residential and commercial wiring, troubleshooting and blueprint reading skills. Required courses include motor control systems, logic controllers and electrical drawings. Classes are held at the college's Golden Triangle campus. Adults interested in enrolling in the program must score at least a 16 on the math and composite sections of the ACT. Program graduates should be eligible to take National Center for Construction Education and Research exams. The college also offers a one year certificate in electrical technology.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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2 Hinds Community College
98.90 22% 6 18:1 13%

Courses built into Hinds Community College's Associate of Applied Science in Electrical Technology degree obtain skills to enter careers as an electronics engineering technician, electrical installer or as an industrial machinery specialist. A technical certificate in electrical technology and a career certificate in electrical technology are also available. This option reduces the time that it takes to earn the associate degree, as certificate credits are transferrable into the degree program. Expect to take courses like solid state motor controls, circuits and planning residential installations. The ACCUPLACER exam is required to get admitted into the degree program.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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3 Rockingham Community College
98.70 21% 6 11:1 15%

Rockingham Community College offers adults two electrical technician training options. Quickest of the three options is the electrical technology certificate. Automation systems, residential, commercial and industrial wiring and sustainable technologies are specialties that the certificates are offered in. More in-depth learning in subjects like wiring, blueprints and electrical repair is provided through the Associate in Applied Science in Electrical Technology program. The school requires electrical technology students to get student accident insurance. An application, a high school diploma and official high school or college transcripts need to be submitted to enroll. As needed, students may have to take placement tests before classes start.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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4 Augusta Technical College
98.36 20% 6 14:1 20%

Augusta Technical College's Industrial and Engineering Technology Division administers the school's electrical and computer engineering associate degree program. Computer engineering technology, electronics engineering technology and instrumentation and control engineering technology are the three specializations that the degree is available in. Program outcomes include technical skills to wire buildings, repair appliances and follow blueprints to complete construction projects. Accreditation for the program is from the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET. Online and paper applications are accepted.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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5 Beaufort County Community College
98.32 5% 5 13:1 18%

Electrical engineering undergraduate credentials available at Beaufort County Community College prepare adults to install, inspect, repair and maintain electrical systems. Classes that lead to the Basic Electrical Wiring Methods Certificate and, later, the Associate of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering Technology adhere to National Electrical Code practices. Over the course of four semesters, students have opportunities to interact with four instructors, getting immediate answers to questions. An academic advisor meets with prospective students to let them know if they need to take placement tests to get admitted into the two year degree or the certificate program. First time students must attend a new student orientation at the start of their first semester.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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6 Hawaii Community College
98.27 30% 5 16:1 20%

Hawaii Community College's Associate in Applied Science Electrical Installation and Maintenance Technology degree is comprised of 71 credits. Core courses provide training that is generally needed to enter a career as an electrician. Courses like interior writing, blueprint reading and electricity theory and practice can also be combined with architectural training to offer adults the background to lead construction projects from inception to completion. Among the associate degree program outcomes are the abilities to interpret National Electric Code data, perform layouts and work with HVAC systems.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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7 Pearl River Community College
98.16 28% 6 16:1 32%

Instructors who teach courses in the Associate of Applied Science in Electrical Technology degree program at Pearl River Community College have a working background in the field. Degree specific courses taught in the 60 credit hour program cover topics like motor control systems, AC and DC circuits and programmable logic controllers. Students who do not currently possess a high school diploma can enroll in the college's GED program to get required secondary education credentials to enter the associate degree program. Applications for the degree program are only accepted online. Dual enrollments are accepted for qualifying high school students.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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8 Athens Technical College
98.10 1% 7 13:1 29%

Abilities to install and keep electrical systems functioning properly at residential and commercial facilities are embedded in the training that leads to an associate degree in electrical construction systems technology at Athens Technical College. Foundational training teaches students how to read blueprints and work with panel boards. To provide students with advanced electrical technology skills, the college offers classes like residential wiring concepts, industrial controls and electrical raceways. Athens Technical College also confers an electrical construction systems diploma. Certificates are conferred in commercial electrical technician, industrial controls technician, photovoltaic systems technician, residential electrical technician and basic electrician.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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9 Lee College
98.10 11% 4 13:1 21%

Instructional and field experience are part of the Associate of Applied Science in Electrical Technology degree at Lee College. Solid math, critical thinking and reading comprehension skills are needed in the classes and the electrician field. Outcomes include the ability to examine existing electrical systems, repair commercial wiring components and respond to residential wiring issues. Places where graduates of the two year program could explore careers include utilities companies, hospitals, schools, government agencies and industrial plants. Although paper and online applications are accepted, online applications generally receive a quicker response. Online applications are generally processed within one to two days.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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10 Metropolitan Community College
97.94 20% 6 14:1 12%

Metropolitan Community College teaches an Associate in Applied Science in Electrical Technology degree program that covers the theory and practical application of residential and commercial wiring systems. General skills that adults need to finish the program are the ability to lift 50 pounds or more, solid hand and eye coordination, good balance and solid math skills. Classes are taught at the South Omaha campus. A total of 96 credits are required to graduate. These credits are a combination of 55.5 major credits, 27 general education credits and 13.5 electives. Curriculum for the electives focuses on electrical technology.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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11 Arizona Western College
97.92 20% 4 21:1 18%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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12 Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
97.68 2% 4 11:1 35%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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13 Southeastern Community College
97.56 28% 4 14:1 10%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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14 Haywood Community College
97.47 9% 5 6:1 20%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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15 Pitt Community College
97.36 11% 5 17:1 13%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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16 Cape Fear Community College
97.34 9% 5 13:1 14%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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17 Itawamba Community College
97.25 52% 4 19:1 26%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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18 Central Community College
97.14 34% 6 14:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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19 Mid-State Technical College
97.09 12% 4 12:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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20 Piedmont Community College
97.09 13% 3 10:1 29%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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21 Coastal Carolina Community College
97.08 3% 5 14:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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22 Mississippi Delta Community College
97.07 36% 5 18:1 21%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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23 Durham Technical Community College
96.98 3% 5 18:1 12%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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24 Sinclair College
96.88 28% 4 15:1 17%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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25 Luna Community College
96.79 15% 3 17:1 19%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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26 Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College
96.78 9% 4 18:1 18%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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27 Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College
96.72 1% 4 22:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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28 Richmond Community College
96.70 6% 4 15:1 16%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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29 South Georgia Technical College
96.64 3% 5 14:1 32%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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30 Savannah Technical College
96.60 N/A 6 17:1 26%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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31 Gadsden State Community College
96.53 25% 4 18:1 14%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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32 Vance-Granville Community College
96.45 18% 4 16:1 28%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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33 Ivy Tech Community College
96.34 9% 8 19:1 9%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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34 Fox Valley Technical College
96.33 12% 4 12:1 38%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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35 Wiregrass Georgia Technical College
96.24 N/A 4 13:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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36 Honolulu Community College
96.24 23% 3 15:1 13%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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37 Jones County Junior College
96.23 35% 4 25:1 27%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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38 Southwestern Community College
96.18 15% 3 15:1 32%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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39 Southwest Tennessee Community College
96.16 9% 4 20:1 6%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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40 Delta College
96.12 9% 5 17:1 16%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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41 Bates Technical College
96.09 18% 5 16:1 65%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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42 Johnson County Community College
96.07 18% 4 20:1 14%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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43 Spokane Community College
96.05 14% 3 17:1 26%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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44 Central Georgia Technical College
96.00 N/A 6 15:1 31%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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45 Stanly Community College
95.93 15% 3 15:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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46 Mayland Community College
95.92 5% 4 14:1 34%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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47 San Diego City College
95.92 N/A 7 27:1 14%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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48 Delgado Community College
95.92 2% 3 19:1 10%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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49 Guilford Technical Community College
95.90 5% 4 20:1 10%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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50 Cincinnati State Technical and Community College
95.88 11% 3 15:1 16%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
1 Idaho State University
99.79 37% 4 16:1 31%

Idaho State University offers adults wishing to enter the electrical technology field the opportunity to complete a four-year education that's based on an electrical apprenticeship. The program is part of the university's workforce training. Each year of the apprenticeship, students receive both classroom and field training. During year one, training covers topics such as welding and cutting, measuring devices, the National Electric Code and blueprint reading. By the fourth year of the program, students are studying lighting circuits, limited energy circuits and commercial calculations. Completing the program qualifies students to meet industry certification requirements.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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2 Great Basin College
99.33 40% 3 17:1 14%

Courses specific to the major in Great Basin College? Electrical Systems Technology Certificate program do not operate on a traditional class schedule. Graduates of the program can work in mining, construction, retail, automotive, hospitality, education and renewable energy industries. Classes are intense and cover motors, alternators, digital concepts and wiring techniques. Aim of the program is to prepare students for the Associate in Applied Science in Electrical Systems Technology degree program, which is also taught at the college. The program operates under the Career and Technical Education Department. Entry into both the certificate and the degree program is competitive. Strong math skills and high college entrance exam scores are recommended.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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3 Jackson College
99.28 21% 6 18:1 N/A

At Jackson College, the road to becoming an electrician is three-pronged. Options are the Associate in Applied Science Electrician degree, the Electrician Certificate and the 16-credit Electrical Basics concentration. The concentration program can be completed in two semesters. This five course program teaches students about circuit analysis, industrial wiring, residential wiring and basic programmable controllers. Forty-five credits are needed to earn a certificate. Sixty-three credits fulfill the associate degree credit requirements. Hours completed during either of the three training programs count toward the four years that are required to become an electrical apprentice. High school graduates, transfer students and international students are accepted into the program.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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4 Montana State University-Northern
98.92 32% 2 14:1 23%

Montana State University - Northern offers the only Associate of Applied Science degree in electrical technology in the state, that works concurrently with the State of Montana Apprenticeship program. By partnering together, students have the opportunity to use their time in the classroom to complete up to 3,000 of their 8,000 apprenticeship hours. The electrical technology program is made up of 66 to 68 credit hours that teach students education basics as well as the fundamentals needed to be a successful apprentice electrician. Students gain valuable on-the-job training with master electricians to gain the practical skills necessary to enter the field.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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5 College of Southern Nevada
98.70 20% 4 24:1 N/A

The College of Southern Nevada offers two Associate of Applied Science degrees with an electrical emphasis. After completing 23 credits of general education requirements, students participate in 10, four credit apprenticeship classes that offer on-the-job training, while working in the field and earning a wage. CSN's inside wireman degree offering prepares students for the journeyman electrical exam while teaching students about electrical tools, installation, troubleshooting and repair. Students who choose the residential emphasis will gain all the skills necessary to work as a residential electrician inside homes and businesses as part of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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6 South Florida State College
98.50 10% 3 17:1 N/A

Sponsored by the Heartland Electrical Apprenticeship Committee, South Florida State College offers students a high-quality electrical apprenticeship program. Admission to the program is limited to those working in the industry for an employer who currently participates in the SFSC apprenticeship program. Requirements for the program include 8,000 apprenticeship hours that provide students with necessary on-the-job training. Students are also required to participate in 640 classroom hours as well as 21 credits worth of prerequisite coursework. The four-year program is broken down by contact hours and includes four summer terms. Upon successful completion students go on to take the Experior examination and work as a Journeyman Electrician.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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7 Palm Beach State College
98.43 9% 3 30:1 N/A

At the Palm Beach State College students interested in the electrician program have the opportunity to gain tremendous hands on experience. Not only will this program qualify students for a career in electrical construction, but also careers in contract work and maintenance. The program lasts 12 months at the Lake Worth campus. Palm Beach State College provides students with eLearning which is an alternative learning service. eLearning provides students with the option to take online courses. Students are ensured the same learning materials as those who take face-to-face courses. eLearning students also have the option to meet with professors and other students on campus.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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8 Pensacola State College
98.39 23% 3 21:1 N/A

The electricity program at Pensacola State College maintains various forms of hands-on teaching. Students have the ability to participate in labs where they build skills in electrical maintenance through construction projects. In-class theory is also provided where students improve their writing skills as well as electrical procedures. The electricity program prepares students for their future careers by focusing on countless electrical segments such as light fixtures and circuit breakers. Pensacola State College offers many student services such as advising, financial aid, and tutoring labs. There are many community events that Pensacola State provides for students that encourage on campus participation and engagement

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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9 Northern New Mexico College
98.38 13% 5 10:1 N/A

Students can gain entry-level skills needed for a career as an electrician at the Northern New Mexico College. The program will prepare students for the state examination that will provide them with a license. This license will allow students to follow the career path they desire. Students must enroll full time in order to complete the program successfully. Financial aid assistance is offered to those who have any questions or concerns. Academic advising is also offered at the Northern New Mexico College where students can explore possible career goals. Those having issues with advisement holds, graduation requirements, and class preference can also find aid in academic advising.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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10 Daytona State College
97.80 24% 2 18:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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11 Pittsburg State University
97.51 56% 3 19:1 50%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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12 LeTourneau University
97.14 97% 2 14:1 61%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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13 New England Institute of Technology
96.99 73% 3 13:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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14 SUNY College of Technology at Canton
96.71 16% 3 17:1 32%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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15 Dunwoody College of Technology
96.55 20% 3 10:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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16 Indian River State College
96.46 11% 4 26:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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17 Bismarck State College
96.34 25% 3 14:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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18 SUNY College of Technology at Alfred
96.26 81% 5 18:1 52%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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19 Lake Washington Institute of Technology
96.10 7% 3 15:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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20 Capitol College
96.10 92% 4 12:1 29%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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21 Florida State College at Jacksonville
96.03 15% 4 22:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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22 Gulf Coast State College
95.79 28% 3 19:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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23 Lake-Sumter State College
95.77 28% 3 18:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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24 State College of Florida-Manatee-Sarasota
95.53 11% 3 22:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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25 Seattle Community College-North Campus
95.53 17% 3 16:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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26 Valencia College
95.14 16% 3 31:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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27 Pennsylvania College of Technology
95.12 9% 3 18:1 40%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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28 Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology
95.10 98% 2 10:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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29 Bluefield State College
94.79 33% 2 15:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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30 SUNY College of Technology at Delhi
94.59 77% 3 17:1 57%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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31 Fairmont State University
94.56 39% 2 15:1 34%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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32 Lawrence Technological University
94.46 82% 2 11:1 52%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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33 Wayne State University
94.41 80% 2 15:1 28%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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34 Point Park University
94.40 95% 2 13:1 50%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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35 Utah Valley University
94.39 33% 2 22:1 17%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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36 University of Hartford
94.37 97% 2 10:1 52%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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37 Northwestern State University of Louisiana
94.16 48% 2 20:1 36%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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38 West Virginia University Institute of Technology
94.14 66% 1 12:1 24%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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39 Northwestern Michigan College
93.98 24% 2 18:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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40 Rochester Institute of Technology
93.91 90% 2 13:1 63%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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41 Kentucky State University
93.80 61% 1 12:1 14%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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42 Seminole State College of Florida
93.56 18% 2 29:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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43 Brazosport College
93.41 20% 3 17:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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44 Western New Mexico University
93.34 26% 3 16:1 16%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
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45 University of Arkansas-Fort Smith
93.17 47% 1 18:1 25%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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46 West Virginia University at Parkersburg
93.12 16% 1 15:1 26%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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47 University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
92.86 54% 2 18:1 62%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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48 Northern Michigan University
92.80 81% 2 21:1 44%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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49 Missouri Western State University
92.78 60% 1 17:1 30%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
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Electrician Training at a Glance

Becoming an electrician requires multiple years of study, including thousands of hours of training in an apprenticeship. Technical training allows prospective electricians to pursue a range of professional opportunities, as an outside lineman, inside lineman, installer technician, or residential wireman. This training is comprehensive, bringing together classroom-based instruction and hands-on training. During electrician training students can expect to:

  • Learn the fundamentals of the field
  • Practice installing insulators
  • Learn how to install underground power circuits
  • Gain familiarity with the National Electrical Code
  • Prepare for a state licensing examination

With increasing job opportunities, completing formal electrician training is well worth the investment.

According to IBISWorld Market Research, the electrician industry is a $155 billion dollar industry in the U.S.

Although the national median wage is in the $50,000 range, experienced electricians can bring home upwards of $86,000 annually, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

The employment outlook for electricians is bright, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting 14 percent industry growth nationally between 2014 and 2024.

Between 2012 and 2022, 19 states are expected to have 20 percent or greater employment gains for electricians, according to Projections Central.

For as many things in our trade that you must learn “in the field,” there are too many things about our trade that can’t be learned just there. This makes formal training a necessity, and is why states require class hours for licensing and not just on the job training. You can’t lose an education. You may get a job, but if there is no more work, you lose that job. But if you get an education, you can take that to any job you ever go to.

How to Become an Electrician: Education & Training

The process to becoming an electrician is comprehensive and can take several years to complete. The practice is regulated at the state level, with most states requiring electricians to complete an approved technical training and apprenticeship program. Different types of training and degrees are available from technical or trade schools, community colleges, and association-based apprenticeship programs. Below is an overview of the different education and training options of how to become an electrician.

Career & Technical School

Time to Complete:

12 to 18 months

Credential Earned:

Associate degree or certificate, depending on program

Learning Outcomes:

These programs provide students with the fundamental knowledge and skills required to install, maintain and repair electrical systems and electronic equipment in commercial and residential buildings. Students may select from a range of specializations, preparing them to work with both high- and low-voltage electronics or move into emerging industries, such as renewable energy.

Curriculum:

Although it varies by school, the curriculum of electricity and electrical technology typically requires approximately 45 credit hours of study to complete. Divided between classroom and laboratory, hands-on instruction, this curriculum prepares graduates for entry-level employment opportunities in a range of electrical-related trades. Once completed, students are traditionally allowed to register for their state’s electrician’s certification examination.

Electrician certificate and diploma programs follow a progressive sequence of courses that introduce students to the principles of the trade, allowing them to develop career-specific skills required for entry-level employment. Below is a sample list of common courses offered in certificate programs.

Course Description
Principles of Electrical Wiring This course provides students with an understanding of the fundamentals of the electronic and electrical trade. Topics of study range from lighting fixtures to motor controls, electrical conductors to fuses and circuit breakers.
Electrical Controls Students gain familiarity with the functions of motor control systems, including an overview of maintenance and troubleshooting. The course discusses guidelines from the National Electrical Manufacturers Association and teaches students about the structural features of electrical equipment.
Introduction to Electricity Students are introduced to the central principles of the electrical trade, covering subjects including the National Electrical Code (NEC), NEC regulations, electrical safety and working with residential electrical services.
Material Applications Students study the structural concepts of residential and commercial buildings and learn about their respective electrical and electronic system environments. Students develop skills to use blueprints, and install hardware and electrical systems safely.

Community College

Time to Complete:

24 months

Credential Earned:

Associate degree

Program Options:

Associate degree programs are designed to prepare students for entry-level electrician positions in residential, commercial, and industrial industries. Depending on the college, students may select from an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) or Associate of Science (AS) degree program. The AAS is a professional degree, one that has limited general education courses. The AS is an academic transfer degree, one that can be used to enter the workforce or transition into a four-year program of study.

Curriculum:

Curriculum includes approximately 60 to 66 credit hours of study. It blends theory and practical, laboratory-based instruction, through the hands-on use of contemporary electrical technologies. Some colleges issue students a state-based electrical apprentice identification card, allowing them to complete professional experience and classroom hours that meet the state’s electrical apprenticeship requirements.

Courses in associate degree programs can be leveraged to meet apprenticeship requirements, prepare for state licensing examinations, to develop additional career skills. Below is a sample of courses commonly offered at the community college level.

Course Description
Electrical Installations This course covers the basics of wiring in residential buildings, aligning with regulations set by the National Electrical Code, and teaching students how to install various electrical systems safely.
Electrical Maintenance Students gain an introduction to the electrical maintenance of industrial, residential and commercial buildings. Topics of study covers electrical code, safety, electrical controls and systems, and the use of electrical testing and installation equipment.
National Electric Code This course reviews the National Electrical Code and provides students with a comprehensive review of the code’s requirements, use of equipment, and wiring methods.
AC and DC Electricity Students develop an understanding of AC and DC circuits, including voltage, current and resistance, preparing them to use electrical instruments to analyze, maintain, install and repair electrical systems.

Apprenticeship Program

Time to Complete:

2 to 5 years

Credential Earned:

Licensed General Electrician

Overview:

Apprenticeships are sponsored by the Electrical Training Alliance and other trade associations, such as the Independent Electrical Conductors. Apprenticeships typically fall into one of four categories: Outside Linemen, Inside Wiremen, VDV Installer Technician, and Residential Wiremen. Depending on the specialty and association, apprenticeships may last between two and five years.

Curriculum & Requirements:

Apprentices are partnered with experienced electricians and participate in both classroom-based and in-the-field work. Traditionally, most apprenticeship programs require students to complete at least 8,000 hours of experience to meet state licensing requirements. Some trade associations have articulation agreements with local community colleges or technical schools that allow apprentices to earn an associate degree during the five years of their apprenticeship. The typical minimum entrance requirements include being at least 18 years old and holding a high school diploma or GED.

The required courses depend upon the apprentice’s field of study as an electrician. Classwork is designed to supplement and enhance on-the-job training, familiarizing candidates with the National Electrical Code and preparing them to take their state’s electrical licensing examination. Below is a sample list of apprentice coursework.

Course Description
Fundamentals of Grounding and Bonding This course provides students with an understanding of code regulations as they relate to bonding and grounding issues.
Motor Theory and Calculation Students study the core concepts of motor controls and motor theory, how to generate proper motor calculations, and handle installations.
Emerging Electrical Technologies Students are introduced to the code requirements for emerging technologies, including electrical vehicle charging stations and wind turbines.

Selecting an Electrician Training Program: Checklist

Students can select from a variety of electrician schools. However, not every program is the same, which means prospective students should take the time to review what each school has to offer. Below is a list of items to consider prior to enrolling in a training program.

  • Does the curriculum cover the National Electrical Code?

    The National Electrical Code (NEC) defines the rules and regulations for the electrician industry. Curriculum should be designed around the NEC, which prepares students to become skilled and effective apprentices.

  • Is the program accredited?

    No singular body accredits electrician schools. And, not all schools earn accreditation. Before enrolling, students should review the institution’s and school’s accreditation. For example, many electrician schools are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

  • Does the program offer apprenticeship training?

    Completing an apprenticeship is a requirement to become an electrician. Some electrician schools offer hands-on training hours that are recognized by the state’s licensing agency and count towards the required hours to earn a license.

  • Does the program offer flexible scheduling?

    Some students may be working professionals and need greater flexibility to complete their degree. Check to see if the school allows students to work as an electrician during the day and complete courses at night or on the weekend.

  • Is the program state-approved?

    Most states require prospective electricians to graduate from an approved apprenticeship or electrical training program. Students should check with their state’s department of higher education and state licensing board to ensure their program meets the state’s seal of approval.

School vs. Apprenticeship: Choosing an Electrician Training Program

Prospective electricians have multiple training paths to prepare for a career in the field: degree-based academic programs and formal apprenticeships. Degree programs offer students the opportunity to gain industry-specific knowledge and professional skills that prepare them for a future apprenticeship. Apprenticeships provide practical, hands-on training along with supplementary classroom instruction that prepares graduates for state-based licensing examinations. There are inherent benefits to both, which allows students to choose a training program that fits the personal and professional needs.

TECHNICAL SCHOOL
  • Gain theoretical knowledge and practical skills
  • Access to emerging or cutting-edge tools and techniques
  • Prepare for transition into a four-year program of study
  • Flexible class scheduling, with day and evening courses available
  • Graduate prepared for an electrical apprenticeship
APPRENTICESHIP
  • Fast-paced, real-world experience
  • Earn increasing wages during each year of the apprenticeship
  • Option for insurance and retirement benefits
  • Earn college credit with tuition covered by apprenticeship employer
  • Industry-certified instructors

Bright Opportunities for Electricians: Job & Salary Outlook

The electrician industry is a burgeoning field, spurred by a recovering economy, improving housing market, and growing demand for construction. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, electricians should experience 14 percent career growth nationally between 2014 and 2024. Other growing areas, notes the Bureau, include manufacturing and emerging technologies, such as alternative power and renewable energy. In fact, nine states are projected to have 25 percent or greater job gains for electricians between 2012 and 2022, and another 23 states will have at least 15 percent growth, according to data from Projections Central. Below is an overview of the employment outlook for electricians.

Industries with the Most Electricians

Industry Employment Hourly Mean Wage (2014) Annual Mean Wage (2014)
Building Equipment Contractors 402,120 $25.82 $53,710
Local Government (OES Designation) 13,870 $29.12 $60,580
Employment Services 11,910 $22.24 $46,260
Nonresidential Building Construction 9,470 $25.06 $52,130
Utility System Construction 7,110 $28.85 $60,010

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2014)

Top 5 States with the Highest Concentration of Electricians
State Employment Employment per 1,000 Jobs
1 North Dakota 4,160 9.44
2 Wyoming 2,600 9.21
3 Alaska 2,280 7.01
4 West Virginia 4,760 6.72
5 Louisiana 12,360 6.45
Highest-Paying States for Electricians
State Annual Mean Wage (May 2014)
1 Alaska $78,800
2 Illinois $69,940
3 New York $69,820
4 Oregon $68,690
5 New Jersey $67,570

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2014)

Licenses & Certifications for Electricians

In order to work in the electrical construction trade, electricians must hold a valid certification. The profession is regulated at the state level, typically by the state’s contractor’s board or a state department of licensing and regulation. Broadly, electricians fall into one of three categories: General Electrician, Journeyman Electrician, and Master Electrician. For most states, the most basic requirement is at least 8,000 documented hours working as an apprentice under the supervision of a licensed electrician, as well as 80 to 100 complementary hours of classroom instruction. Prospective electricians should contact their state’s licensing department to ask about state-approved apprenticeship programs and licensing requirements prior to enrolling in any training program.

Experienced electricians may also pursue specialized certifications to advance in their career or pivot into a new service area. Specific requirements vary by state, but generally require between 2,000 and 4,000 of supervised training under a licensed electrician and the passage of a state examination. Some common specialty areas include the following:

  • Residential
  • Residential Maintenance
  • HVAC
  • Appliance Repair
  • Pump and Irrigation
  • Equipment Repair

Beyond state-specific certifications, electricians can also complete voluntary certifications from third-party associations and vendors. Example voluntary certifications include the following:

Electrical Training Alliance Certification

The Electrical Training Alliance offers four nationally recognized certification programs for electricians.

Cable Splicing Certification

This certification is designed for individuals that work with splicing shielded electrical power cables. It requires the successful passing of a written knowledge examination and a practical (performance) examination.

Instrumentation Certification

This certification is for Journeymen Wiremen who are seeking to burnish their skills in instrumentation. The certification requires a successful score on a 200-question, open-note examination and a passing of a practical demonstration examination.

Craft Certification

This certification is designed for Inside Wiremen. The certification requires the successful passing of six written examinations and a performance test. Level 1 through Level 5 test entry-level knowledge, while the Level 6 examination is for individuals who are ready to become or are a licensed Journey-level electrician.

Solar PV Certification

The PV System Installer certification requires candidates to pass a single examination that measures the candidate’s knowledge of electrical work in both residential and commercial settings.

NETA Electrical Testing

The International Electrical Testing Association offers four levels of nationally recognized certifications for individuals in the electrical testing industry. To move up in classifications, applicants must meet the professional qualifications for that class and pass an examination for each previous level.

ETT Trainee Level I

An entry-level classification for individuals who are not certified technicians and are working under the supervision of a certified technician.

ETT Assistant Level II

This classification is for individuals who still require direct supervision, but conducts limited testing work.

ETT Certified Level III

This classification is for individuals who are experienced with performing electrical testing and switching, as well as supervising workers at the Trainee Level I and Assistant Level II.

ETT Senior Certified Level IV

This classification is for workers who are responsible for supervising projects and managing electrical crews.

Essential Skills & Experience for Electricians

Electricians must call upon a broad array of specific skills and industry knowledge. These skills are developed in the classroom and enhanced during an apprenticeship. Below is a list of five core skills and knowledge areas electricians should possess.

  • Ability to listen and follow instructions

    Becoming an electrician requires hands-on training from another electrician. Electricians should be attentive, listen to what others are saying, and follow directions to install wiring safely.

  • Familiarity with National Electric Code and local building codes

    Knowledge of the National Electric Code is a must, not only to earn a state license, but to practice as an electrician in a safe and professional manner.

  • Professional tools

    Electricians should develop familiarity with and a collection of industry tools, including cable reels, screwdrivers, stripping tools, voltage meters, and wire/cable cutters.

  • Design aptitude

    Electricians should possess critical thinking skills and be special thinkers as they are required to plan the layout and installation of both electrical wiring and equipment based on different specifications.

  • Mathematical and mechanical skills

    Electricians should be mechanically inclined with mathematical skills, as electrical calculations are required in each type of installation and repair: industrial, commercial, and residential.

Expert Advice from a Licensed Electrician

Interview with Marc Nowak, Licensed Journeyman Electrician & Instructor at Lincoln Technical Institute
What are the benefits of a formal education for electricians?

Benefits range from the simple—being more knowledgeable than someone without an education – to the more complex—having a support system to guide you through your career. Many people working in the field only know a small portion of the work we as electricians perform. Getting a formal education gives the student a chance to learn a much broader scope of work and work related skills.

What is the curriculum like in electrical technology/electronics/electrician programs?

Most Electrical Technology courses focus on the two most important things: Safety and The National Electrical Code (NEC). After basic theory courses students are introduced to materials (Romex, MC, EMT, etc.) and basic installation methods (switching, receptacles, disconnects, and starters). Then, then move on to more complex equipment (motors, transformers, VFDs, and PLCs). But courses are constantly changing to keep pace with our industry. New avenues of education being brought to these courses involve environmentally friendly and green technologies like solar panels, wind turbines, and fuel cells.

What advice do you have for someone considering an education to become an electrician?

Know who you are. I went to a four-year college and spent five years getting a bachelor’s degree because I didn’t know myself well enough. The students who always work their hardest are always the first to get employment. It’s easy to work hard at something if you love doing it.

Additional Resources for Electricians