The electrical trade can be an interesting, rewarding career. However, it does require some commitment and hard work to learn.
To start out in this career, you need a high school diploma or GED certificate. Alternatively, you can complete a program at a technical institute or college.
1. Get a High School Diploma or GED
High school diplomas are one of the best ways to get into a career in the electrical industry. They prove you have a thorough knowledge of math, science, language arts and social studies.
However, if you aren’t currently enrolled in a school program or have other barriers to getting a diploma, a GED credential may be the best option for you.
A GED credential consists of four core subject tests: Reasoning Through Language Arts (RLA); Social Studies; Science; and Mathematical Reasoning. The test consists of seven hours total and is designed to measure your ability to learn and retain knowledge in these subjects.
2. Complete an Apprenticeship
An electrician apprenticeship provides a pathway to a well-paying career by providing on-the-job training, classroom instruction and mentorship in the trade. Apprenticeship programs are often offered by employers or organizations in collaboration with industry associations, labor groups or apprenticeship councils.
While the exact apprenticeship program varies from employer to employer, most apprentices complete at least 144 hours of on-the-job training and 2,000-4,000 hours of classroom instruction. Upon completion of their apprenticeship, apprentices become eligible to take a journeyman exam to obtain a license as an electrician.
3. Get a License
If you’re interested in a career as a master electrician, there are some steps you need to take. These include completing an apprenticeship, continuing your education and gaining experience.
During an apprenticeship, you learn the skills necessary to work safely on a job site. You also receive training in basic electrical safety and code knowledge. After you’ve completed your apprenticeship, you can test to become a journeyman electrician or a master electrician.
4. Get a Continuing Education
Getting a Continuing Education is a great way to further your career, learn new skills and pursue personal growth. There are many options available, and the right one can fit your needs and goals.
Many careers and licenses have specific requirements for continuing education that are important to your success. These requirements can include taking yearly classes, attending conferences and earning professional certifications.
5. Get Experience
After a few years of on-the-job experience, journeyman electricians can move up to master status. It is a fairly difficult process that takes time, but it’s well worth the effort and can be very rewarding.
The path to becoming a master electrician requires extensive classroom instruction and hands-on work experience. The exact requirements are going to vary from state to state, but generally you’ll need to complete an apprenticeship and apply for a license.
6. Get a Master’s Degree
Getting a Master’s Degree is an excellent way to further your career, increase your earning potential and gain job security. It is also a smart way to pursue your passions and challenge yourself.
The length of time it takes to earn a Master’s Degree depends on a number of factors, including your choice of major and school. Some programs are accelerated and allow students to complete their degree in less than two years, while others can take longer.
Regardless of the length of time it takes to complete a Master’s Degree, you must stay focused on your goals to be successful. Whether your goal is to land a job, expand your knowledge, increase your salary requirements or challenge yourself, keeping that goal in mind will keep you motivated to achieve success.
7. Get a Job
If you are looking for a career with long-term job security, great pay and a high level of education and training, consider becoming an electrician. This is a rewarding and exciting career that can lead to a variety of different opportunities, from working in the residential sector to working on large-scale commercial projects.
The first step to getting a job as an electrician is to get some experience on the job. Many electricians begin their careers as apprentices, completing classroom instruction and practical on-the-job training at trade schools.