The listed wages may vary by state and county. Resource union websites for additional wage and benefit information.
Retirement And Pension Funds
Must Be 18 Years Old For Hire
High School Diploma or GED
It’s not all about wiring. Considering a career in the electric trades? In this trade, you will learn to work with diverse electrical formulas and computations. As a construction electrician, you will lay out, assemble, install and test electrical circuits, fixtures, appliances, equipment and machinery. Electricians work inside residences, commercial and industrial establishments, schools, hospitals, libraries and other buildings. Construction electricians are craft workers, and like all genuine skilled workers, they derive satisfaction from using both their minds and hands in a constructive manner.
Get started by finding your local union below.
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High school students should take construction courses that focus on mechanical tasks and electrical-related shop and trade courses. Drafting and manufacturing courses help students get the basic skills needed for a job in the electrical trades. It is important to take math classes such as algebra and geometry to learn calculations for volume, weight, and measurements.
Completion of high school classes does not count toward hours in an electrical trades apprenticeship programs, but the experience and classes taken are valuable in building student’s skill set.
Some Locals highly recommend a person complete a two-year diploma in a technical or related trade before they apply for an apprenticeship. Other unions may recommend an applicant complete a two-year “Electrical” certificate, which can count as completion credit toward one of the five years of the total apprenticeship, or about 2,000 accredited hours. Before enrolling in a trade or technical school, contact your local union to ensure school credits transfer/see how secondary education fits into the apprenticeship program.
The paid apprenticeship program typically lasts five years and includes at least 1,000 hours of classroom time with a total of 8,000 hours of hands-on experience. After joining the union, apprentices will be eligible for healthcare and dental insurance after 3 months of work or 130 hours of work, depending on the union. When an apprentice can demonstrate competence in vital skills, the apprenticeship will be complete. Apprentices will graduate as a journey-level construction trades worker and take the Minnesota State Electrical Licensing Exam to become certified.
The apprentice works full-time with a contractor to complete on-the-job training. Related training is completed at designated training centers. Most apprenticeship programs accept applications year round but each local has its own application fees and deadlines for interviews and aptitude tests.
In the State of Minnesota, there are seven electrical trade unions that are all part of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). While there are similarities between the apprenticeship programs for each Local, there are some differences. To learn about the apprenticeship program of each local, click below.
• Local 294 (Bemidji, International Falls, Brainerd, Grand Rapids)
Call to learn about an apprenticeship with Local 294. View a list of Local 294’s approved contractors.
The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers(IBEW) accepts applications year round. However, each local union has its own deadlines to take an aptitude test and complete an interview. Click here to learn how to apply and view the application checklist, here.
Tuition costs vary by apprenticeship program. GI Bill benefits can help offset costs for books and materials. Also, for applicants of Native American descent, tribal scholarships may be available.
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Manual dexterity, task-oriented mindset; ability to use construction tools and construction software. The problem-solving nature of electrical work requires that apprentices be comfortable with math, have strong mechanical skills and follow safety procedures closely to reduce the risk of accidents and injuries.
For high school students preparing to enter the electrical trades, consider part-time jobs that require hands-on work to build experience. Being driven and showing an interest in how things work is critical to thinking like an electrician. Planning projects, executing on deadline, and taking on projects with increasingly complex mechanical skills are valuable in this trade.
If applying for an electrical trades position after spending time in a branch of the military, candidates also have options apply to the electrical trades positions through Helmets2Hardhats Minnesota. The Department of Labor and JATC receive service information to properly credit labor hours to the apprenticeship. The Military Occupational Specialty (M.O.S.) must be electrically related for candidates to be considered for credit completion. Ask for an Application for Advanced Standing: Prior Credit. If you are a veteran and wish to receive consideration for such training and experience you need to submit a DD-214.
An employer/contractor/apprenticeship instructor may require drug and alcohol testing of employees and applicants for employment, including random testing.