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Discussion Starter #1
I apologize in advance if this is the wrong forum for this, but it seemed the best fit...

It recently came to my attention that our local is hiring electrician apprentices. I understand how to use basic hand and power tools, as my father is a carpenter, and my s/o is a union millwright. In regards to electrical work though, I have no true knowledge/experience, and won't pretend that I do. I'm looking for any advice and resources I can on the trade to decide if it's the best course for me before wasting anyone's time.

I'm an avid weightlifter, so I'm not so concerned about the physical strain of the job. I know I'm going to get sweaty, and dirty, and nasty, and that doesn't bother me. Virtually every position I've held in the past, I've held no knowledge of prior to hiring, but have been able to pick up with minimal training. I've been told with apprentices that it's actually preferred to have someone "green" as opposed to trying to teach an old dog news tricks, but I'd like to have at least the basics down so I'm not walking onto a job blind. I'm not looking to perpetuate the "clueless female" stigma.

Any resources, advice, suggestions would be greatly appreciated! I'm doing as much studying up and learning as I can, but the wealth of information out there is rather overwhelming. Like I said, I want to make sure I'm in this for good and can hold my own before wasting anyone's time.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I didn't think about pre-apprenticeship positions-- I'll have to ask the trainer. I plan to give him a call once my application is in just to introduce myself and try to get as much advice as I can to ensure I'm on the right path! I went to the library and checked out 4 different books on wiring, and misc. electricity-related information. Now to just figure out what I need to know now, and what's more advanced and can wait for the job site...

I have I think... until April, until interviews start. So here's hoping I can be read up and more well-informed by then. Thankfully we're currently remodeling our home, and we have a bit of electrical work to be done, so that'll be good practice!

Thanks again for the words of encouragement, guys! :)
 

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I'm an old EC

I don't see in gender, i see in what can be in my back pocket

I.E.~ I'm not interested in any testosterone or estrogen 'waving' any more than your hiring prospects are

That said, tuck your t*ts in a sports bra, don't create sexual tension on the job, stfu about last nights debauchery ,and do you job to the best of your ability

In return, we (those who you'll apprentice to) should try and answer all of your code related Q's to the best of our ability

good luck

~C(EOE)S~
 

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Bilge Rat
motors and controls.........
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You prolly already know this, but you'll get hit on about 500 times a day.

Eventually though, if you have a good work ethic and are willing to learn (it sure sounds like you are), a few guys will get past the gender garbage and treat you like one of their own.

The first few weeks (or months.....) can be rough, just like anyone else, you'll need to prove yourself. This usually means put up with some of the worst work there is and being called every name in the book plus a few you've never heard!!

But if you can take the initial abuse, you'll do just fine, guy, gal or other......lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah, my boyfriend's in the trades as well and warned me about what to expect as far as men. I could see how some women may antagonize, but I fully intend to show up, do what needs to be done, and go home. I definitely identify as one of the guys, so I feel I could hold my own. Doing my best to educate myself in the field as best I can before stepping on a job site so I can go about "proving myself" a little more smoothly.
 

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THE "BIG RED MACHINE"
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Go ahead and sign up with the union , while you're waiting and going through the process try the following:
*donate a weekend or two a month at your local Habitat for Humanity's see you if you like the construction aspect
*apply at some Electrical Contractors and electric motor shops as a helper or apprentice
*take some night courses in electrical technology or enter a comprehensive electrical program
 

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:-)
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No problem. I started out of High School back in '68. Knew nothing about the trade and became a great Electrician! :laughing:

I seen my first female electrician in '72. Anyway there should be no problem, seen a couple of lady renovators the other day.

Have at her. :thumbsup: You will learn on the job.

Perhaps your union has some sort of start up program? Anyway if they are starting out 'starters' they don't expect you to know a lot about electricity.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My first instructor said to learn the names of the tools, so at least you won't sound like an idiot!
Haha, fair enough. I know my way around a handful of hand tools, but definitely plan to familiarize myself with the more trade-related ones. Fortunately we have a few electrical projects around the house that need to be done-- (installing a new light fixture, installing a new outlet by the fridge, putting all the garage lights on one switch, and rewiring my office so all the outlets actually work) so hopefully that'll be enough hands-on experience to at least get me into the groove of things!

I'm going through "Electrical Principles and Practices" currently. I scanned the safety section and just got into the basic math chapter. I figure if I can get a grasp on most of what's in the book, I should be in a pretty solid position.

I'll definitely have to contact the hall and see if they have any kind of helper positions available or anything else that would help me get a real feel for the position.
 

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My girlfriend has been interested in the trade, some of the challenges i can see her having are handing harassment, lack of hand strength, lack of being mechanically inclined. all things are more than possible to over come, however will definitely require more work than your typical male apprentice. The trade is so large and their are so many career paths that a female would enjoy, I say go to college and learn the basics then go for it!
 
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