Electrician Schools and Training in Nebraska
There's a lot of confusing information about what it takes to enter the electrician trade in Nebraska, so we figured we'd set the record straight and create an "All You Know to Know" post about becoming an electrician in the Cornhusker State. If you still have questions by the time you reach the bottom, send us an email or leave a comment. We're glad to help you get started in the electrician trade.
What Do I Need To Know?
Most Nebraska electricians get their career start in one of two ways: they get accepted into an apprentice program, or they attend a training program at a community college or an electrician school.
Both options will provide you with a great career, but they're a little bit different.
Apprentice programs are available through union and non-union organizations. They prepare people for the workforce by bringing them to the jobsite, and giving them one-on-one guidance over the entire training period (which usually lasts two to five years). There is some coursework involved, but most of the training occurs on the job. Participants get paid for every hour they work, and if you register with the state, the hours you work can count towards an electrician license.
Electrician schools are another well-established means of entering the field. Training programs at technical colleges and community schools also provide hands-on learning, but they do so in a controlled atmosphere where students' safety is the first concern. Of you become a student, you'll be taught a wide array of skills, including how to:
- Draft blueprints, and work off of the blueprints other electricians and construction professionals have drafted;
- Design electrician systems in different building settings (ie, you'll learn how to design an electrical system for a house, for a commercial building, for a factory, etc);
- Make sure that the systems you create meet the regulations set forth in the National Electrical Code; and
- Maintain electrician systems that have been created and installed by other electricians.
There's a lot more you'll learn, but that's the gist of it.
What's The Right Path For Me?
That's difficult to say. You'll need to do a little research and find out. Apprenticeship programs are a great way to get your training, but there's often a very long waiting period, and not everyone gets chosen. The community colleges and electrician schools in Nebraska will accept you right away, but they're not free. What we suggest is learning about all of your options. Contact each of the schools in your area, and reach out to all the organizations that offer an apprenticeship program. When you have a better understanding of your options, you'll have a better understanding of your next step.
A Quick Note About Your License
This may not be something you need to think about right now, but eventually, you should acquire a journeyman electrician license. Journeymen electricians earn a higher annual salary, get more benefits, and are hired for higher-paying (and more interesting) jobs. So, when you begin your career, file it away in your mind that you should eventually start working towards a journeyman license.
One important thing to know is that you may need an electrician apprenticeship in order to get an electrician license in Nebraska. According the State Electrical Act and State Electrical Board Rules listed here, you'll need to complete four years of an apprenticeship to become a licensed journeyman electrician.
It's also important to note that completion of a two-year post-high school electrical course approved by the board may count as one year of experience. So if you decide to go the "schooling" route, you'll need to check with the Nebraska Electrical Division (NSED) and make sure that they'll recognize the school you go to.
What Kind Of Living Will I Make?
If you make "electrician" your career title, what kind of a salary will you be earning? Let's take a look at some figures from the federal government about trade wages in Nebraska.
|Nebraska||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Wage|
|All Occupations in NE||$19.75||$41,080|
Licensed electricians are right in the middle of the trades when it comes to salary. Plumbers and HVAC laborers make more, but carpenters and construction workers earn less.
Here are some other observations about the statistics above:
- Plumbers, HVAC workers, and electricians all earn more than $20 an hour, whereas carpenters and construction workers earn less ($16.61 and $13.64, respectively).
- Construction workers in Nebraska don't get paid much! $13.64, or $28,370 per year, is a considerably low wage for the effort and labor it takes to be a construction worker.
- While they are not at the top of the list when it comes to annual salary, electricians do make more than the average worker in Nebraska. The "All Occupations in NE" statistic is the average salary of the average person with a job in Nebraska. The average electrician earn $2,710 more than that each year.
Keep in mind, there are many variables that determine how much you can make as an electrician. Where you choose to work, the specialty you choose, and the licenses you earn will determine what kind of a salary you make.
List of Schools and Training Opportunities
We've compiled a complete list of all your training options, from electrician schools, to community college electrical training programs, to union apprenticeships.
If you decide to pursue a career as an electrician, we wish you the best of luck!
Electrical Schools in Nebraska
Western Nebraska Community College — Alliance Campus
1750 Sweetwater Avenue
Alliance, NE 69301
Central Community College — Grand Island Campus
3134 West Highway 34
Grand Island, NE 68802
Central Community College — Hastings Campus
550 South Technical Boulevard
Hastings, NE 68901
Mid-Plains Community College — McCook
1205 East Third Street
McCook, NE 69001
Southeast Community College — Milford Campus
600 State Street
Northeast Community College
801 East Benjamin Ave.
Metropolitan Community College
Applied Technology Center
10407 State Street
Omaha, NE 68122
Mid-Plains Community College — North Platte Campus
1101 Halligan Dr.
North Platte, NE
Western Nebraska Community College — Scottsbluff Campus
1601 East 27th Street
Scottsbluff, NE 69361
Western Nebraska Community College — Sidney Campus
371 College Drive
Sidney, NE 69162
Union Apprenticeship Programs in Nebraska
JATC of Lincoln
6200 South 14th Street
Lincoln, NE 68512
JATC of Greater Nebraska
8960 L Street
Omaha, NE 68127