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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I am currently in the Air Force (non electrical job) and decided I will separate early next year (2014). I am interested applying for an electrician apprenticeship with the IBEW in Florida. I contacted the local JATC there and they said they have abundant work right now but it might take months to review my application. I have a bachelors degree and have taken physics and calculus in college. I have a few questions...sorry if these have been asked a million times. Just trying to get some insight on a possible career change.

Do you find electrician's work rewarding?

How hard is it physically from 1-10 (10 being hardest)?

How much is climbing/going up really high involved in the job? (can go up ladders but I'm not crazy about extreme heights)

Do many electricians decide later to go for an Electrical Engineering degree later? Is it easy to progress if you are a skillful electrician?

Thanks. I'm trying to soak up as much info as possible.
 

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Do you find electrician's work rewarding?
Yes, rewards me with money and I don't even hate it.

How hard is it physically from 1-10 (10 being hardest)?
Completely varies from career choice.. "electrician" is a wide open, vague term, for a group of people who work with electricity. I bet some guys it's like a 2.. other guys, it's a 10.

Also, it typically starts out, especially physical.. apprenticeship you often do work that once you become a journeyman, you wouldn't do.

How much is climbing/going up really high involved in the job? (can go up ladders but I'm not crazy about extreme heights)
Don't pick a job that requires that, then. I hate heights too, and I manage.

Do many electricians decide later to go for an Electrical Engineering degree later? Is it easy to progress if you are a skillful electrician?
Don't have stats, but I doubt many do that. Most either enjoy electrical work, and do it... or else they leave electrical and do an entirely different occupation.

The beauty of an apprenticeship is you don't have to spend a bunch of money and many years in school to then discover you don't even want to do that career. This is very little to no upfront cost.. you work and learn and get paid as you go. If you hate it, you stop and go in a different path.
 

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Hello,

I am currently in the Air Force (non electrical job) and decided I will separate early next year (2014). I am interested applying for an electrician apprenticeship with the IBEW in Florida. I contacted the local JATC there and they said they have abundant work right now but it might take months to review my application. I have a bachelors degree and have taken physics and calculus in college. I have a few questions...sorry if these have been asked a million times. Just trying to get some insight on a possible career change.

Do you find electrician's work rewarding?

How hard is it physically from 1-10 (10 being hardest)?

How much is climbing/going up really high involved in the job? (can go up ladders but I'm not crazy about extreme heights)

Do many electricians decide later to go for an Electrical Engineering degree later? Is it easy to progress if you are a skillful electrician?

Thanks. I'm trying to soak up as much info as possible.


Do you find electrician's work rewarding?

It totally sucks,that's why I love it...:eek::laughing:


Electrical work is hard , sometimes it's well beyond 10 but most of the time 5 would be a good average.

Climbing all depends on what you're doing.

It is a great challenge to progress in this trade,but if you're skillful you'll do fine.

Moving up to the point where you create your own electrical contracting firm is the way to go.


Thank you for your service and Welcome to the forum..:thumbup:
 

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Doberman, first, thanks for your service to our country and welcome to the forum. If you went through boot camp and the armed services, you'll do just fine as an electrician.

I work primarily industrial and commercial construction, some days are very hard, but for the most part its around a 7 out of 10. I would also recommend joining the union and try getting with a larger contractor that does big jobs, its a challenging and constantly changing field. Working on industrial/commercial fire alarm systems, door access - card reader systems, control wiring, cameras systems, instrumentation, its endless.
 

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Welcome to the forum...

You might want to look into Helmets to Hardhats...
http://www.helmetstohardhats.org/

Everything varies, I have worked atop of 900 foot buildings and under the Hudson River - on easy air conditioned jobs with cafeterias full of german super models to dirty hot miserable jobs and frozen sites.

If you apply yourself the job is never tough. Just challenging enough to keep it fun.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Another couple newbie questions. I am about to send in my application to the JATC...How long does the whole process take in your experiences? Do they make their decisions on who is in just before class starts?

If I do well on the written test and interview, what are my odds of getting in within a year?
 

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stay in the military. If you are tired of the air force, join the navy.
 

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The pay in florida for being an electrician is not too good as far as i know. Dont expect to be rolling in money anytime soon.
 

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Welcome to the forum....Electrical work can be cumbersome but pays really well...It can get hard but as you climb the ladder,you get used to it...As for degree,if you really are good in your work,you wont really need to opt for one...:)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks fortion. Thats encouraging. I just sent out my application to the jatc in florida. I have no electrical experience currently. Is there something I can do before I separate from the military that could at least get me some electrical experience? Anything else I can do to improve my changes of getting in?
 

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Hit Usajobs.gov
We have a hiring freeze for the most part right now,, but its worth the shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Is it ok to apply to more than one ibew jatc program? Or is that frowned upon? How hard is it to transfer apprenticeships within the same state?
 

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Thanks for the good info guys! Please keep the good advice coming. Does the work get easier as a journeyman?
the pay rate in Fl is very low, but so is the cost of living. If you ever want to see what the union pays in any state , go to that states Dept of Labor and search "prevailing rate schedule" all the info will be there for every trade (inc. electrician).

I would also add that a construction electrician is the hardest on the body, as a whole, but you will like it because of the diversity it offers. Maintenance electricians have it a little easier, as a whole (there are exceptions).
 

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Is it ok to apply to more than one ibew jatc program? Or is that frowned upon? How hard is it to transfer apprenticeships within the same state?
not sure of that, but whatever local you pick make SURE they have a lot of work, and future work. Someone here from florida union will hopefully chime in and let you now which ones are hot right now
 
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