How to Become an Electrician

Are you interested in becoming an electrician, but you’re not sure where to begin? Are you curious about what your future in the electrical industry would look like?

If you like physical, hands-on work that relies on understanding complex details and problem solving, becoming an electrician may be right for you. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), electricians install, maintain, and repair electrical power, communications, lighting, and control systems in homes, businesses, and factories.

A career in the electrical industry could be right around the corner, after you complete the following three steps.

1. Find the Right Electrician Trade School

Individuals interested in becoming electricians may want to complete trade school. The Delta Technical College (Delta Tech) Industrial, Commercial & Residential Electrician Program offers students the skills and hands-on training necessary to gain entry-level employment as an electrician, electrician’s helper, or electrical apprentice. The program provides hands-on training and classroom instruction, during which students are given the opportunity to learn basic electrical theory, mathematics, wiring, load calculations, motors, and electrical controls. Field and shop safety are also important components of the program.

After completion of the Delta Tech electrician program students will be prepared for taking electrician licensing exams and/or entry-level employment as electricians, electrician’s assistants, or electrical apprentices. The timeline for the Delta Tech program is 30 weeks (7 months), 750 clock hours, with 187.5 additional outside hours, and 30 semester credits. The electrician program is offered at the Horn Lake, MS and Ridgeland, MS campus. Daytime and evening classes are available in the Electrician Program. They include:

  • Electrical Theory/NEC/Grounding
  • Meters/Lighting/Blueprints
  • Electrical Mathematics/Conduit Bending
  • Conduit Bending/Terminations/Standby Systems
  • Overcurrent Protection/3 Phase Distribution/Load Calculation
  • Motors/FA Systems/VDV/Controls

2. Obtain Your Electrician’s License

Electricians in Mississippi, and several other states, are not required to get a state license. A program certificate or diploma is sufficient for employment. Many other states do require electrician’s licenses. License and examination fees vary by state. For example, in Alabama you will be charged a $115 examination fee and a $35 licensing fee.

3. Seek Employment or Start Your Own Business

Once you have completed the above steps, you will have taken the necessary steps to prepare for employment as an electrician. Electricians often work full-time, and they may work evenings and weekends. Inclement weather can also be a factor for electricians whose jobs take them outside. There is potential for self-employment as an electrician, especially if you choose to set up your own business in residential construction. This may allow more flexibility and scheduling. According to the BLS the largest employers of electricians are:

  • Electrical contractors and other wiring installation contractors (65%)
  • Self-employed workers (8%)
  • Manufacturing (6%)
  • Government (4%)
  • Employment services (3%)

Starting Your Career in the Electrical Industry

There are several steps to becoming an electrician, from choosing an educational program to completing the licensing requirements depending on state regulations to begin working. Once prepared and ready to begin seeking employment as an electrician, electrician’s assistants, or electrical apprentices, there are many available options in the electrical industry, including commercial or residential work. Once you’ve gained experience, you may choose to become a master electrician or independent contractor.

If you think a career in the electrical industry is right for you, the (I/C/R) Electrician Program at Delta Tech allows you to complete training in less than a year. Start on step one today by contacting the Delta Tech Admissions Team to learn about enrollment.