Electrical engineers design the systems that keep buildings, computers, factories, power grids and telecommunications running smoothly. They are behind the technology we use in our daily lives, from electric motors to radar and navigation systems to robots. These highly specialized engineers must have excellent problem-solving skills and be good communicators to work on teams during the development and production of new technologies.
To pursue a career as an electrical engineer, you will need to earn a bachelor’s degree in engineering. Many schools offer three-year programs that combine a three-year undergraduate degree with two years of graduate studies to get you started in the profession. It’s also important to take as many math and science classes as possible in high school to prepare for college. In addition, try to participate in electrical engineering-related internships and other experiential opportunities as a way to gain experience.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers offers several professional certifications to help you advance in your career. Some of these include Certified Electrical Safety Compliance Professional, which recognizes individuals who are responsible for overseeing the electrical safety program in an organization and developing a comprehensive plan for protecting personnel from exposure to electrical hazards.
To obtain a master’s degree in electrical engineering, you will need a minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate level coursework. Applicants are admitted to the program on the basis of professional and scholastic achievement as well as their aptitude for graduate study.
Electricians work in a variety of different environments. Depending on the industry, they may work outdoors or indoors. Indoors, electrical engineers conduct project planning by designing drafts of systems on paper and holding meetings with investors and clients. Outdoors, they build and test physical electrical systems, often working on high-voltage equipment. This type of equipment is typically found in factories, power generation plants, and research labs.
While electricity is a vital part of any modern workplace, it can be hazardous to workers who don’t follow safety regulations. Exposure to energized wires or other electrical equipment can cause burns, shocks or even cardiac arrest. To help prevent accidents, workers should use personal protective equipment (PPE) when necessary, such as rubber insulating gloves, face shields, hoods or line hoses. They should also make sure that all equipment is de-energized before inspections or repairs, and that it is properly insulated and grounded.
Those who have an interest in becoming electricians can learn the skills required for the job by earning a vocational certificate or completing a vocational school program. Students can also improve their chances of finding employment by gaining relevant experience through internships. This will help them gain hands-on skills, develop professional connections and get a feel for the work environment. In addition, it will give them an edge over other candidates.
The job outlook for an electrician is positive and expected to remain so in the foreseeable future. The demand for skilled electrical engineers is increasing due to technological innovation and development of new products, such as semiconductors and solar arrays. The career can also be a lucrative one, with salaries reaching more than $100,000 in some positions.
Those who want to become an electrician should pursue an associate’s degree or complete an apprenticeship program to gain work experience. Most employers require electricians to be ONC (Ontario Certification) level or higher, and have at least two years of relevant experience. Electric motor, power tool and related repairers usually begin their careers by working in machine or electrical workshops. The work is typically manual and involves using tools, so workers should be prepared for physical labor.
According to O*NET, employment for electrical and electronics installers and repairers will increase by 6 percent from 2014 to 2024. This rate is much faster than the average for all occupations. Many of these jobs will be in construction, but there are some openings in manufacturing, professional and technical services, and health care. There will also be some opportunities in energy fields, as companies develop distribution systems for new technologies. Some electricians will be needed to train employees on the use of new technology and to provide maintenance for existing equipment. Electrical Contractor