Electrician Schools and Training in Wisconsin
If you'd like to begin a career as an electrician, there's a lot you'll want to know. We've compiled the post below to give you info on licenses, salaries, and career options. If you're ready to begin a high-paying career as an electrician tradesperson, you're in the right spot!
First Up, Some Important Info On How To Start Your Career
We get this question a lot: "What does a person need to actually DO to become an electrician?"
It's a little confusing. Basically, you have two options. You can:
1. Enter an electrician school or a training program at a community college; or
2. Become an apprentice through a union or non-union organization.
Let's take a look at each of those options, and maybe figure out which is the right call for you.
Electrician Schools in Wisconsin.
Training programs and technical schools and community colleges offer career training that is catered to people who want to become electricians. Most schools offer a kind of "mock" work atmosphere, where you can develop your skills in an atmosphere that's safe and secure (in other words, where you won't electrocute yourself). Students are taught how to:
- Use software to create blueprints, and work from blueprints made by other trades workers;
- Install wiring in different types of structures (ie, homes, business offices, factories, and industrial centers) and make sure that the work done meets local electrical codes;
- Maintain wiring that has already been installed, and keep entire buildings up and running;
- Gauge electricity by using measurement tools like oscilloscopes and voltmeters;
- Find a structure's faulty wiring and fix it; and
- Work with electricity in a safe and secure way.
There's a lot more you'll learn in school, but that gives you an idea of what you can expect. When you receive your degree/diploma/certificate (depending on the kind of school you enroll in), you'll be able to enter the workforce and find a job.
Local Apprenticeship Training.
Wisconsin has a few excellent apprenticeship programs, and if you can gain entry, you'll receive some very solid training.
As an apprentice, you'll be paired with a licensed electrician, and go to each of the jobsites he or she goes to. You'll "learn by doing," and be given bigger and bigger tasks as you learn the ropes. Most programs last two to five years (so by the time you finish, you'll truly know your stuff), and you'll also earn a salary and be paid for all the work you do.
The only problem with these programs is that 1) spots are often limited, and there are more applicants than there are openings; 2) the entrance exam and interviews can be difficult; and 3) there is often a waiting period of a couple months to a couple YEARS.
If you can nab an apprenticeship, that's fantastic. If you can't, or if the wait is ridiculously long, you should consider school.
What's The Correct Choice For Someone Just Starting Out?
We'd advise that you check out the electrician schools in Wisconsin, and look into the apprentice programs near you. Both are a great way to get into the trades. After you do a little research, you can make a list of each of the opportunities you have, and figure out the best choice.
Income For Different Tradespeople
Here's some good news if you live in Wisconsin and want to make "electrician" your career title: licensed electricians in Wisconsin earn a fine living.
We consulted the federal government's center for salary data and gathered the following statistics about trade worker salaries in Wisconsin:
|Wisconsin||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Wage|
|All Occupations in WI||$20.62||$42,880|
As you can see, electricians earn $55,280 per year (on average). That means they:
- Earn about ten grand less per year than plumbers, but $7,250 more than carpenters, and $8,090 more than carpenters, and an astounding $15,630 more than construction workers; and
- Make more than $25 per hour, unlike carpenters, HVAC workers, and construction workers.
Perhaps the most important data point on the graph, however, is the "All Occupations in WI" metric. That figure---$42,880---represents that average income for a resident of Wisconsin, regardless of job type (in other words, it's the average state income). Electricians make $12,400 more than the average Wisconsin resident. It's good to know that you'll be justly rewarded for the work you do!
Now that you know a little bit about the process, your next step is to start researching apprenticeships and electrical schools in Wisconsin.
Remember: our country needs electricians, and if you choose to enter the trade, you'll be helping all of us in the years to come!