Apprentice To Journeyman, Becoming An Electrician


According to a survey by ManpowerGroup, since 2009, the hardest jobs to fill in the US have been skilled trades jobs. These skilled trades include plumbers, welders, and framers, but one of the hardest hit trades is electricians. More people are moving into desk jobs and leaving these industries, which creates a void of skill and labor. If you have ever had an electrician out to perform some work on your home or to give a quote, you know that they make good money. And that is because their work is in demand because their labor force is getting smaller. If you are good with your hands and the typical desk job isn't for you, now is the perfect time to become an electrician. Here is how to do it. 

Get Education and Formal Training

First and foremost, you need some formal education. This can be as simple as a high school diploma or a GED. Many tradesmen have found that they thrive in real world problem solving, but having a solid classroom education base is key. Once you have the book learning out of the way, you need to get formal training in electrical work. This can be done mainly in one of two ways:

  1. Vocational or technical school: this is hands-on classroom learning. You will have labs and books to read, but will be learning by doing most of the time. 
  2. An apprenticeship program: typically done in conjunction with some technical school classes, an apprenticeship program will pair you up with a master electrician. You will even get paid while you learn.

While in school or when just starting out, you will be referred to as an apprentice. Your mentor is typically called a journeyman, but this vocabulary may vary. 


Once you go through your formal training and graduate, usually between one and two years, you can start working full time under a journeyman electrician. The single best thing you can do to prepare to become a journeyman yourself is to work and learn. Try to find a smaller electrical contractor to work with and learn all you can from them. Once you get to this point, you will move from being an apprentice to a helper. 


If you desire, you can continue working as a helper if you are happy with the working conditions and the pay. However, most electricians try to become licensed in order to gain part ownership in a company or start their own businesses. Your licensing requirements will vary by state and city, but there is usually a certain number of hours you must have worked in the industry before getting a license. This number can be anywhere between 5,000 and 10,000 hours. Once you have your hours, you will need to pass a test based on the National Electrical Code (NEC). Once you pass you can pay your dues and obtain a license. 

Becoming an electrician isn't an easy road, but at the end you have a lot of freedom. You can own your own business and hire employees, all while making a good living. For more information, contact an electrician in your local area at Royal Plus Electric.


10 August 2015

adding electric lights to your yard

How well is the outside of your home lighted? Do you have several areas around your home that become pitch black after the sun has fallen for the day? If you live in an area that does not get very much sunlight during the day, you probably have the same amount of success as I have had trying to use solar powered lights to light those dark areas. I finally broke down and contacted an electrician to help me run some power to the dark areas and install some much needed lights. He was able to give me a few suggestions that would not only brighten up my dark yard, but also look very nice from the street.