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Old 10-05-2016, 03:35 PM   #1
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Default I want to be a lineman...

Hey guys,

As the title says, I am interested in becoming a lineman. I am currently enrolled in my last semester in College for the welding program here in Montgomery, AL.

I know I know... why did you take welding if you wanted to be a lineman? Well the lineman was a fallback plan in the event that welding didn't work out. I am a recently separated veteran from the Navy as of last May and I still have enough of my GI Bill left to get the degree in Electrical Technology/Instrumentation here at school. The welding economy here locally is garbage and I can only find jobs that want to pay 10 bucks an hour starting out. Yeah I don't think so. While money isn't my motivation for the career, I cant work for free either.

My question for you gentleman is:

1) Is the degree necessary to become a lineman? Don't get me wrong, I understand that its good to have it versus not.

2) Whats the best way/option to get looked at for employment with Alabama Power as a lineman? I don't know anyone who works for them and judging from their website they only seem to want folks with prestine degrees for office jobs.

3) Would my welding education be at all helpful in this line of work? (feels kind of rhetorical to ask).
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:19 PM   #2
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Welding will be worth mucho dinero when oil drilling picks back up, but you'll have to relocate. Something to ponder.
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:43 PM   #3
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Thank you for your service and welcome to the forum.

I suggest next time you see some linemen drinking coffee you pull over and tell them you just got out of the Navy and you're interested in being a lineman. Ask what you need to do to get the job?

I've seen some video on lineman bootcamp. If you're military you should have an advantage.
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Old 10-18-2016, 02:02 PM   #4
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The best way to become a Lineworker is to find the local IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) office and inquire about an apprenticeship program. Many programs have preferential treatment for veterans and you can use the GI Bill to offset any costs.

In Washington State, the Lineworker program is 7000 to 8000 hours, which equates to 3 1/2 to 4 years. After that you can, as a Lineworker, write your own ticket. Lineworkers are in demand all over the country and the union apprenticeship is recognized as a standard for training.

Your local utility may have an apprenticeship program; it's worth looking into that also.

Thank you for your service!
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Old 11-02-2016, 10:47 AM   #5
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I also want to thank you for your service.

Use google to find Alabama Power. Most companies take applications on line. Linemen don't usually weld much, if any. But utility companies have power plants, mechanics, and sub station positions where welding is needed. The buss in sub stations is mostly aluminum now days and is welded.

Also search for pole line contractors. Most companies use at least some % of contractors and that is another way to get your training.

Utility companies used to have better pay and benefits than contractors but now days this is changing. Expect to travel some as a contractor. Good Luck with this.
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