If you’re thinking about becoming an electrician, you’ve chosen an in-demand trade—according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for electricians is estimated to increase by 9% between 2016 and 2026. But how do you become an electrician? And what exactly does the job entail? Here are a few frequently asked questions about this top technical career.
Understanding the Role of an Electrician
What does an electrician do?
An electrician installs, maintains, and repairs power and electrical systems for homes, businesses, and factories. They work in both indoor and outdoor environments to make sure electric items such as lights, appliances, and industrial equipment operate reliably and safely, as well as meet all necessary codes and requirements. Often, an electrician will opt to specialize either in construction and installation (laying down new wiring, adding outlets and circuit breaker panels, etc.) or maintenance and repairs.
What skills do I need to become an electrician?
First and foremost, you need to be good with your hands, as electricians spend most of their time working with tools and machinery. You also need to be physically fit and comfortable working in a variety of environments, from outdoor construction sites to cramped indoor spaces. Often, these working environments feature live electrical wires and other dangerous elements, so mindfulness and attention to detail are also very important.
What level of education and training do I need to become a professional electrician?
While requirements vary by state, New York requires at least a high school diploma or its equivalent to obtain an electrician’s license. Typically, electricians-in-training take educational courses at a technical trade school, as well as participate in apprenticeship programs that provide paid, on-the-job training. To perform electrician-related tasks in New York, you must complete at least 7 ½ years of this training and pass a licensing exam.
What kinds of jobs can I find as an electrician?
Many licensed electricians are employed by electrical contractors. There are also opportunities in industries such as tech, manufacturing, construction, and oil and gas. You can also work as an independent contractor or start your own business.
If you’re interested in becoming an electrician, Berk Trade and Business School in Long Island City, NY, offers everything you need to achieve your goal and thrive in your field. In operation since 1940 and accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges, this renowned trade school offers both electrical and plumbing training, along with top-notch instructors, individualized attention, and flexible class schedules. Visit the school’s website for more information, and call (718) 729-0909 to schedule a campus tour today.