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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone! (thanks in advance for the time)
I am a 31 years old aspiring apprentice electrician from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I am starting to look for an Employer/Journeyman that can Hire and train me.

I have applied for a pre-employment program(at SAIT) that will start on May. However, after reading comments(on the internet) like it is a waste of money($4,800) and time, I kind of agree about the money part. Any opinions regarding getting this course, specially those from Alberta, Canada? Do Employers / Journeymen generally value such training today that the $4,800 would actually be a good investment in my part?

Do Employers / Journeymen post on job sites that they are hiring new trainees? All I can see from job sites are 1st , 2nd, 3rd, 4th year apprentices. I am not even an apprentice yet so I'm guessing those are not the job postings I am looking for. Am I wrong about that? Can I apply fro the 1st year? If my guess is correct what are the proper keywords that I should be looking/using regarding job postings/inquiries?


Thank you again and I apologize for the long post and my elementary questions!
 

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:-)
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Welcome. Longer post coming...

Check with the Calgary Union. Edmonton (Local 424) has a starter program. Three months, costs $300.

http://www.ibew424.net/training/pact.html

That's a little better than $4800. Plus you will have a job when done. Problem is of course they take about 10 only.

As to weather the SAIT course will help... it should. NAIT and SAIT of course teach electricians in Alberta.

I think the negative comments are about the dirt-bag private and on-line courses.

NAIT and SAIT courses should hold some weight. Can you? ...

1. Challenge the 1st. electrical exams in effect making you a 2nd. year apprentice EXCEPT for the actual work hours.

2. Does the course credit you time towards your 1st. year.

I'm thinking SAIT will offer the above. If so it's probably worth it. They may also have an 'in' with larger contractors to place their students. Check with them on that.

Also you might check with the Calgary Union to see if they have a program like 424 does in Edmonton.

Edit:
From the SAIT web page on your course...
http://www.sait.ca/programs-and-courses/apprenticeships-and-trades/pre-employment/pre-employment-electrician.php

The program prepares students to enter an apprenticeship with hands-on skills and, upon successful completion of the program, to challenge the first year Electrician Apprenticeship Exam.

Totally above board. It will be recognized and certainly not a waste of time. A job is better but this should look good on your resume. They are probably actually teaching the 1st. year course for Alberta Electricians.

Edit 2:
Also if you were an apprentice that has worked in the field and ready to take your 1st year schooling, I wonder what the costs are on that? Perhaps the same $4800? In which case you would be wasting zero.

Edit 3: Some old stuff...
The year: 1968. NAIT. My schooling was free.
1st. year, we starved.
2nd., 3rd., and 4th. we were allowed to collect Unemployment Insurance.

Not sure how they do it now.
 

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Edit 4:
Admin would not let me edit (timed out) the above post anymore but...

Once you challenge the exam and pass Alberta says you are a 2nd year apprentice. Just need the field hours to complete and of course get the increased pay.

The industry has to accept that. Your time at SAIT is not wasted.
 

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Hello Everyone! (thanks in advance for the time)
I am a 31 years old aspiring apprentice electrician from Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I am starting to look for an Employer/Journeyman that can Hire and train me.

I have applied for a pre-employment program(at SAIT) that will start on May. However, after reading comments(on the internet) like it is a waste of money($4,800) and time, I kind of agree about the money part. Any opinions regarding getting this course, specially those from Alberta, Canada? Do Employers / Journeymen generally value such training today that the $4,800 would actually be a good investment in my part?

Do Employers / Journeymen post on job sites that they are hiring new trainees? All I can see from job sites are 1st , 2nd, 3rd, 4th year apprentices. I am not even an apprentice yet so I'm guessing those are not the job postings I am looking for. Am I wrong about that? Can I apply fro the 1st year? If my guess is correct what are the proper keywords that I should be looking/using regarding job postings/inquiries?


Thank you again and I apologize for the long post and my elementary questions!
Welcome aboard...:thumbsup:
 

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Estwing magic
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4800 bucks is a complete waste of money. Here's what an employer really wants to know:

Do you have a car or are you riding the bus?
Are you a drug addict?
Do you have half a brain in your head?
Do you have personal issues (like your girlfriend runs your life)?

Get a job in construction. That can mean sweeping floors, digging holes, etc. That's better experience than sitting in a classroom.

Get your CSTS (Google it)
Take a night course in Basic Electricity.

Hit the bricks and start talking to general contractors about a laborer's job. Then, after six months of construction experience, start talking to electrical contractors.
 

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Apply for any first year positions you see but say your a starter. Infact apply at every company out there. All starters I have hired either have a pre - training course, some sort of experience in a trade already or have shown interest by taking some safety courses. For the price of that course I would suggest taking some online and structured courses instead, csts, whmis, lift training, first aid and arc flash training. By taking atleast some of those your saving an employer time and your ready to get your boots dirty. Also if this is what you want to do, get all your tools now (lists are on this site) and make sure you let potential employers know you have them. In the past I seen starters say they had tools and only showed up with a hammer, tape measure and flat blade......don't be that guy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
daveEM
-I will look for more info regarding challenging the first year exam. Any idea what the topics are? Is it both in paper and hands on? I did the First year of the Electrical Engineering Technology Program at SAIT back in 2005 so I have some understanding of Electrical Principles and some lab experience.
-I will also check out the unions and their courses. I don't mind moving temporarily for cheaper training and/or work at least for the first year experience.

HARRY304E
-Thanks!

99cents
-Do you have a car or are you riding the bus? Getting a car in the near future.
-Are you a drug addict? No
-Do you have half a brain in your head? Yes
-Do you have personal issues (like your girlfriend runs your life)? outside of my employment gap, No.

Kryptes
- I will start on those courses ASAP.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
More questions

-What tools should I have as a starter? Should I get one of those Electrician tool kits?

-Can one start first at residential and transfer to commercial,institutional, or industrial while still an apprentice? Do you have to start working on industrial to be an industrial electrician?

residential (housing developments)
commercial (office buildings)
institutional (hospitals)
industrial (plants, factories).

I am willing to go anywhere in Alberta at least for a year to get in, so that should get me more options.

Thank you again.
 

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There are RULES for challenging the 1st. test. I'm thinking you take the course at SAIT, NAIT as they suggest they qualify so you can do this.

Walk in off the street... isn't going to happen.

Everything you need to know if you want to be an Electrician in Alberta...
http://tradesecrets.alberta.ca/trades-occupations/profiles/003/

Have at that site.
 

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-What tools should I have as a starter? Should I get one of those Electrician tool kits?
The starter kits are good, but you'll probably wind up with a few tools you never use, and might over pay by a $100-200 versus if you bought what you NEED (right now) individually.

There's been a few threads on what tools a new apprentice should have.. search them out, if you can't find it, I'll be happy to advise what tools. But you DEFINITELY need tools. You're useless to people without tools. They don't have to be fancy brands, you just need everything you need, that's all.

-Can one start first at residential and transfer to commercial,institutional, or industrial while still an apprentice? Do you have to start working on industrial to be an industrial electrician?
Anything is possible.. and definitely if you are not happy or getting anything from your current company or type of work, don't just up and quit, but start working on lining up a new job. Apprenticeship is all your responsibility, it shouldn't be, but it is. You gotta make sure you are learning or you'll end up like me, a licensed contractor who has no idea what he's doing. :laughing:
 

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Your in Calgary, get your tools, and steel toe boots. Get in your car with resume, use a GPS type in electrical and start knocking on doors, here is my resume I'm ready to work I have boots and can start tommorow. I bet by the end of the day someone will chase you down in the parking lot after the receptionist hands over the resume. Seen it happen a few times.

Edit: if you want some tools toss me a pm and you can come over I got lots I can sell you cheap, it would be worth your time.
 
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