The Electrical Contractor Network

ECN Electrical Forum
Discussion Forums for Electricians, Inspectors and Related Professionals

Books, Tools and Test Equipment for Electrical and Construction Trades

Register Now!

Register Now!

We want your input!


2017 NEC and Related
2017 NEC
Now Available!

Recent Posts
Would ELV branch circuits be a good idea?
by LongRunner
Today at 07:42 AM
100% breakers?
by Texas_Ranger
Today at 06:13 AM
Forum Software Upgrade coming soon...
by Trumpy
01/14/17 07:11 PM
Faricating Guards out if Lexan?
by Trumpy
01/14/17 07:09 PM
Dangerous DIY Advice
by Potseal
01/12/17 09:52 AM
New in the Gallery:
Desk-mounted "power-board"
Shout Box

Top Posters (30 Days)
HotLine1 15
gfretwell 11
ghost307 10
sparkyinak 9
Webmaster 8
Who's Online
2 registered (frank, gfretwell), 363 Guests and 4 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#170984 - 11/16/07 10:43 AM Should I become an electrician?
Bolt3 Offline
New Member

Registered: 11/15/07
Posts: 4
Loc: up north
I'm in my first year of EE at University and it's become abundantly clear that I won't be able to pass the higher level classes without some intense, highly-paid tutoring and/or graphing calculator haxing. I know they say engineers make a lot of money right out of school, but it seems like it's going to take me five or even six years just to get through the program. Also, I was looking in the classified ads and there was an ad for an engineer with starting pay ~40k. I know that's on the low end, but that's where I fear I'll end up as I'm not the brightest bulb in the metaphorical shed of math-loving virgins.

So I want to know, is there a demand for electricians these days? How long would I have to be an apprentice (read: bitch) until I could get my license? And last but not least, are y'all rich?

Business, Office, Estimating, Legal:
#170988 - 11/16/07 01:43 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: Bolt3]
WireNuts29 Offline

Registered: 07/24/07
Posts: 85
Loc: Mass, U.S.A.
If I were you I wouldn't settle on becoming an idiot electrician. God knows we're not the brightest bulbs and just kinda fell into this "job". Ok that's a bit of sarcasm.However. If you have no interest in getting your hands dirty, and listening to some idiot who's been there and done that. I would keep my nose in my books. Also in the three states which I hold licenses its a four year school and work apprenticeship, then you have to take an exam to get your journeyman's license. As far as being rich I personally make a good living comparitively to people in my age group(27). Also count on starting at the bottom of the ladder (getting coffee, picking up stock etc.)If you are interested just pay attention and you learn alot more on the job that you never read in a book. Thats my 2 cents good luck.....

#170992 - 11/16/07 02:25 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: Bolt3]
LarryC Offline

Registered: 07/05/04
Posts: 782
Loc: Winchester, NH, US

What do you like to do? What are you good at? If you suddenly got $10,000,000 what would you do with the rest of your life?

Work is where you are going to spend more time awake, than anywhere else in your life (for the forseeable future), hopefully it is somewhere you want to be, and doing something you like doing.

Figure out what you enjoy doing and then determine how to get there.

If you don't really know, consider the military. Not everybody who enlists goes to a battlefield. I spent 6 years in the Navy where I learned how to operate nuclear power plants. I learned alot in multiple technical fields, met some very good people, and some real a**holes. The military can be a good and bad thing. If you have the maturity, you can learn alot, earn some money, see some of the world, and get out with a better understanding of what you do and do not want to do with your life. The military is not for everybody but it usually only three to six years.

Another alternative to full time at the University is night classes at the local community college. The advantages are multiple. It is cheaper, some of the Instructors are real world working adults that can give you in sight to the working world, and usually some of your classmates are also working adults.

The best advice I can give you is to keep your ears open and listen to the other people out there. Most people are willing to help you.

Good Luck.

Larry C

#170996 - 11/16/07 03:01 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: LarryC]
etech Offline

Registered: 06/16/07
Posts: 17
Loc: Oregon
You must love the trade to make it. Money should not be the main reason, yes we make a good wage that we EARN. My father in-law was an electrican in the mines of Montana and the stories and friends he made got me interested. I love talking "Shop", hanging out with other electricians and love being an electrician. My nephew is now in apprenticeship. One of the instructors in apprenticeship school once told us that he would be proud to stand up next to a Doctor and say he was an Electrician. Proud since 1993

Edited by etech (11/16/07 03:02 PM)
Edit Reason: none

#171002 - 11/16/07 04:21 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: etech]
Bolt3 Offline
New Member

Registered: 11/15/07
Posts: 4
Loc: up north
You need to go to school for 4 years??

#171006 - 11/16/07 04:50 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: Bolt3]
etech Offline

Registered: 06/16/07
Posts: 17
Loc: Oregon
If it were easy, little girls would be electricians!

#171009 - 11/16/07 05:59 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: etech]
copper Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 04/04/05
Posts: 32
Loc: PA
I would look at the military if that is a choice. I never been in it, but looking back now I kinda wish I did take a 2nd look at it. They best guys I worked with are X Marines. They don't complain just do the job. Well most are like that. as far as an EE. I once looked into it. I feel your pain. I work E&I. I see the crap engineers do and I can't see myself dong it. It seems now of days employers want you to have a EE or EET. Good luck. I wouldn't be a plain ol Electrician...
"If your going to be stupid, You gotta be tough"

#171010 - 11/16/07 06:03 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: Bolt3]
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
You are operating under a mis-conception. You are thinking that an "electrical engineer" is, in some way, superior to a 'simple' electrician.As if he were the officer, and you the sergeant. Nothing could be further from the truth.

#171011 - 11/16/07 06:38 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: renosteinke]
wire_twister Offline

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 265
Loc: Georgia USA
An instructor once told me that an electrician was more important than a doctor, a doctor can treat you IF he can see to do it. Point being an electrician is just as important as any other job out there. Like everyone else has told you, it is better if you like your job, do not go into it just for the money. I love the trade, cant remember wanting to do anything else.

Life is tough, Life is tougher when you are stupid

#171014 - 11/16/07 07:44 PM Re: Should I become an electrician? [Re: Bolt3]
electure Offline


Registered: 12/24/00
Posts: 4227
Loc: Fullerton, CA USA
So I want to know, is there a demand for electricians these days?

If it wasn't for electricians, electrical engineers would be out of a job \:\)

What about taking both courses of action? Try the trade, and at the same time attend engineers school?

Page 1 of 2 1 2 >

ECN Electrical Forums - sponsored by Electrical Contractor Network - Electrical and Code Related Discussion for Electrical Contractors, Electricians, Inspectors, Instructors, Engineers and other related Professionals