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#12928 08/21/02 08:00 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 33
anyone here of PCDI? ( ) Any comments or opinions on schools like this?

Anyone know of other schools in Southern California?

#12929 08/21/02 08:44 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 914
Hello, I'm glad to see your interest in this field. It can be a good career. However I don't think you can even come close to gaining the skills needed in the field with a home study course alone. Maybe, if you work as an electrician and use this course to learn the detailed aspects, it could benefit you. IMHO, the best way to learn is by doing.

#12930 08/21/02 09:51 PM
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 206
Having been a greenbean in the field for the last year (on a somewhat accelerated track) I second Eagle's comment. Get out there and get yourself a job, even as a helper...

#12931 08/21/02 10:09 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 33
I totally agree with you, however, my concern is not being able to get a job as an electrician without some sort of documented electrical education or experience.

I do have a good understanding of electricity and the NEC and local codes. I have done alot of work for myself and friends.

I am just not sure how to go about getting a job with no real experience or education. Any ideas?

My ultimate goal is to get my 4+ years in and get a CA contractors license.


#12932 08/21/02 10:25 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 1,691
Go to (international brotherhood of electrical workers) and go to the apprentices link.

I believe you have to go to your IBEW local and take a test of basic algebra and reading comprehension before you can start the apprenticeship.

#12933 08/21/02 11:16 PM
Joined: Jan 2002
Posts: 324
Ah the master scheme, I hear that every day at the supply house and on the job.

A word to the wise, nobody is gonna hire you with Sally Struthers "you to can learn to be an electrician from the comforts of your own home".

The best advise I can give you is get to work in the trade ASAP. Once you have done it in the field a couple of thousand times, those line drawings and tap configurations will make a heck of a lot more sense to you. Find a good company and ask if they need a helper. Start from the ground up and you'll be better off. After you get a couple of years into it, then go to school at a tech school. I thought I knew a bunch more than I did until I went back to school. I ,like most, was clueless.

If a person comes to me and ask for a job I ask them if they REALLY want to be an electrician or are they just wanting a job. If they are serious it will show the first week.

#12934 08/25/02 06:12 AM
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,723
Likes: 1
Broom Pusher and
This trade is one where hands-on knowledge is needed before the book knowledge.

As suggested, seek employment with an existing EC [Electrical Contractor].
Start out with your eyes and ears open, do not be afraid to ask questions about anything you work with, then once you get more familiar with the trade by all means PLEASE feel free to study the books!

It will take some time before you can take the exam for your License [Master Electrician], so don't get too far ahead of yourself. After working the trade awhile, you might think twice about jumping into the "Bidding War" aspect and consider other areas [I hope no one got offended by that, I am aiming towards the problems faced with the typical Contractor, which is why I choose to Design / Enjun-ear / Install and Manage upto the point where bidding is passed off to another person].

If you want a field where education is a never ending quest, this is the field for you!
Get into the technical aspects of the field and you will never stop studying, or learning from everyone around you!

<small promotional piece> This site has a huge cache of resources - from free ones to $$$ ones </small promotional piece>

Open eyes, open ears and open mind are the prerequisites for a successful career in this field.
Passing on knowledge to others is part of the curriculum!
Being a responsible installer, co-worker or foreman is another part.
Team work is a major priority.

Always keep this in mind.

Scott S.E.T.

Scott " 35 " Thompson
Just Say NO To Green Eggs And Ham!
#12935 08/25/02 08:34 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 4,293
I believe that the Riverside Community Colleges offer night courses in "electricianing".
That way you can work during the day, and school at night.

#12936 08/25/02 09:44 AM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 202
And the Phrase " USE IT OR LOSE IT" also comes to mind. you can take all the schooling you want but if you don't use it soon and on a daily basis alot of it will be lost. And after going to school at night to get my associates degree i agree with everyone you need the books but actually doing it on the job is the best learning experience. and alot of schools don't teach the things that you really need to know

#12937 08/25/02 08:38 PM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 28
Actual working experience is best. But really, the book learning helps too. I have worked with too many guys who where good in their specialty but often didn't know why they did things the way they did or in a few cases, didn't even do it the best way. And they were often stuck in the specialty because they didn't have the theorectical knowledge to easily learn new things. The best way, and for the record I'm not a union guy, is to go the IBEW route. They have a good mix of hands on and book learning. But it can be hard getting into the IBEW. So do the books but make it a prioity to go for the hands on. One bit of advice for any apprentice, be the most usefull one you can so that the better journeymans with the most stroke will want you as their helper. Usually, not only will you learn more but guys who are really good don't have to attempt to prove it by treating their helpers like dirt.

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