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Electrician Apprenticeship Program

Discussion in 'Members' Lounge' started by |Chaz|, Jul 12, 2014.

  1. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    So, last June I applied for the Puget Sound Electrician Apprenticeship Program. I paid the fee, took the written exam, got a good score, went to the interview and got scored and placed on a list. Was something like 50 on the list. Kept calling for a few months to see if it got any better. They take people from the list and you move up and then they add people and you move down.

    Anyways, I got an acceptance letter in the mail today. My first thought, "well fuck me, now I have to potentially make a career choice."

    I would much rather be a trooper. Not quite a for sure thing yet. I'll have to play it by ear though and see if I will have to decide or not.

    The electrician program pays significantly better. $42 an hour after 5 years.

    State patrol is more like $31.

    If I have to choose though, nearly positive I will choose WSP, I really want to do it.

    Still kinda crazy though. Completely unexpected.
     
  2. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin VIP

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    Can you take the apprenticship, keep interviewing, and quit if you get the police job?
     
  3. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    That's what I'll have to find out Monday. Hoping so, since that would be the ideal thing to do.
     
  4. chadcharb

    chadcharb Well-Known Member VIP

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    in the long run you will make WAY more money being IBEW, both hourly and with the OT you will get. I dont think electrician is much safer than being a cop though lol but atleast you wont be working holidays and what not. If I had to choose I would go electrician for the money and the skills you can use if you leave that job, but Im not you. In the end you have to like what you do and it sounds like thats being a copper
     
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  5. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Yea, I gave it a lot of thought today. Did some research and read forum postings, the electrician gig just doesn't sound fun to me. I can't stop reading copper forum posts and different experiences people have had, it just makes my heart start racing with anticipation.
     
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  6. jamesA

    jamesA Well known pissed off telephone guy VIP

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    Why not both? I know city cops that work for alarm companies on their off days.
     
  7. totalburnout

    totalburnout Well-Known Member VIP

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    Pension, government benefits, government job security, overtime > apprenticeship or even becoming a master electrician (UNLESS you are smart and capable of building and running your own electrical contracting business, in which case, you can easily out earn and potentially work far less hours later in your career but more hours initially).

    Can't just look at what you make per hour when evaluating a job. The average cost of health insurance for a family of 4 is $14000 annually. 401k or pension benefits are worth a significant amount as well.
     
  8. D16Civic

    D16Civic Matt

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    I'm sure the excitement of writing speeding tickets 40 or more hours a week is what some folks would want, but not me. I'm a "work with my hands" kind of guy, so I would take the apprenticeship. Either way, if I could I would opt out of the union. Unions are a joke. Your dues don't gain you anything, and in fact in a right to work state you don't have to pay dues to enjoy the same "benefits" as the union members. And I belong to a union.

    I know you're a younger fella, but my advice would be to look long and hard at the long term stuff. A guaranteed pension vs a 401k only type package, etc. If you can get a pension after 25 years I would take it. And I would contribute more than I could afford to an IRA or other retirement account at the same time. Retire at 55ish and then enjoy life.

    Also don't forget holidays. May not matter now but once you're married and have kids, working holidays is going to suck. Police departments don't close. Somebody is gonna work. When I was your age working on a holiday was no big deal, and now it seems like an atrocity.
     
  9. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Put the paperwork in to get the ball rolling on the Electrician apprenticeship program. Will be starting WORKING August 4th. If I make the cut for the State Patrol that's what I'm going to do. I have 1600 hours worth of working with the Electrician apprenticeship program before I would suffer any consequences from quitting.
     
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  10. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Don't want to leave anything on the table though. Don't want to do retail paint forever though, that's for damn sure.
     
  11. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin VIP

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    Absolutely. Take every opportunity, even if you aren't in love with it, and move when something better comes around, not when you want something better to happen.
     
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  12. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Even if I get stuck doing the electrician thing for awhile I'll double what I make now in 3-4 years. Definitely increase our quality of living no matter what. Squirrel some money away and hopefully buy a house.
     
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  13. D16Civic

    D16Civic Matt

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    I wouldn't be surprised it you end up liking the apprenticeship. You'll end up using your head a lot. It's more than just grunt work.
     
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  14. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Yea and I'll actually have weekends off lol. I'm a little apprehensive, I've been doing this paint thing for 4 years now. Its always uncomfortable being the FNG. I'll get over it though.
     
  15. Briansol

    Briansol Admins Admin VIP

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    if you never step out side of your comfort zone, you'll be medicore your whole life.
    no risk, no reward.
    have fun, take chances. and all those other slogans here....
    if this goes to shit, i'm pretty sure you can get another paint store manager job....
     
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  16. BigJ

    BigJ I'm just about that action Boss. VIP

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    Do it man.

    Part of me wishes I joined the carpenters union when I had a chance. My buddy is a super on the 520 project and his guys make so much effing money. Hard work, blah blah lay offs, but still It's a great gig. His electricians make even more. It's ridiculous. It's somewhat rewarding building things too.
     
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  17. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Oh yea, I'm looking forward to it. My neighbor has been doing it for 12 years. He was the one who encouraged me to apply, he even told me he has duplicates of a lot of tools and that he would give me what he can and will help me with any questions I might have.
     
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  18. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Well, I'll be starting working next Tuesday. Had my first night of orientation tonight, job readiness tomorrow night, first aid Wednesday and Thursday, and job readiness II Saturday. Crazy!!!
     
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  19. chadcharb

    chadcharb Well-Known Member VIP

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    I hope you enjoy it. that was my back up plan in case being a lazy city worker didnt work out lol I was thinkng more along the lines of seattle city light lineman though
     
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  20. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

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    Well brought home my tools they gave me (all Klein). They gave me a nice Klein tool belt and suspenders.

    Start working in Seattle tomorrow for Valley Electric Company. Not sure on the details of where the job site is though.
     
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