As the cost of degrees continues to increase dramatically, a less conventional form of education seems to be gaining lots of traction: the apprenticeship. Research shows that paid apprenticeship jobs have become an attractive option among young people, military veterans and even people who are established in the workforce.
What’s more, as opposed to degree programs that usually take at least four years to complete, apprenticeships may only require a few months or years to complete. You’ll typically work full-time hours as an apprentice while getting some valuable classroom instruction as you move forward. Either way, since you are being paid to learn, these may be worth your time and effort.
There is no doubt that electricians are part of a group of highly skilled professionals who learn and master the intricacies of their craft by working alongside proven masters of the trade. If you are dreaming of a career in this particular field, an electrician apprenticeship could be the first stop on your path to a marvelous career in the electrical trade. It can equip you with problem-solving skills, knowledge and hands-on proficiency to achieve your dream of becoming a qualified electrician.
However, it is important to note that today’s electrician apprenticeships are highly regulated, structured, all-inclusive, usually consisting of at least four or five years of classroom work as well as on-the-job training. Even though a significant number of electrician apprenticeship programs include the classroom aspect, you may complete an electrician associate degree or diploma program beforehand.
This will help you satisfy all the required classroom hours before you start your apprenticeship. As an electrician apprentice, you’ll work under the close supervision and guidance of a master electrician, a prospect that makes the quality of your training and exposure to real-world electrical jobs second to none.
One way to get an electrical apprenticeship is through the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). The program blends online learning, classroom education and hands-on practical experience. You can choose any of the following programs:
- Inside wireman
- Outside lineman
- Residential wireman
- Technician (Sound & Communication)
To get in the program, you will have to complete an application, take an aptitude test and pass an interview. If you pass, your name will go onto an eligibility list for two years. When there is an opening, the IBEW program will contact you.