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Alaska’s economy focuses on fishing, tourism, and mining.
Electricians, however, have an important auxiliary role in the state as they’re needed to ensure various types of properties, especially the commercial ones, stay functional.
If you’re interested in becoming an electrician in Alaska, you must follow these steps:
- Become an electrical apprentice and earn 4000 hours of work experience.
- Take and pass the test to become a journeyman or residential electrician.
- Become licensed as an independent electrical contractor.
The last step is needed only if you want to run your own business as an electrician.
Median Wage for an Electrician in Alaska
Besides knowing you’ll find employment once you finish your training, the income can be another reason to want to become an electrician.
In Alaska, the median wage for an electrician is $53 849 per year, while the best-paid electricians can earn around $61 361 annually.
This salary is higher than both the median one at a national level, which is of $47,951 annually and that of the best-paid electricians around the country, who earn around $54,640 per year.Annual Salary Range:
Average Salary of Electricians in Alaska
Becoming an Apprentice Electrician in Alaska
To complete this step you have to enroll in the apprenticeship training program at your local union and attend the required classroom hours.
Training is completed through the Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committees (JATCs) and it’s not uncommon to have the unions pool together their recourses to offer training.
Alaska Joint Electrical Apprenticeship & Training Trust (or AJEATT) is the main JATC in the state and it’s a collaboration between the Alaska Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1547, done under the Electrical Training Alliance.
You will need to obtain a minimum of 4,000 hours of field experience as well as 1,400 hours of education in a classroom.
Requirements to enroll in the AJEATT:
- Be over the age of 18
- A valid driver’s license for Alaska
- Have a copy of your driving record
- Minimum a high school diploma/GED or college degree
- An official copy of high school transcripts
- Pass the Algebra 1 class or an online math course, or the Work Keys Placement Test from the Alaskan Job Center
Those who meet these requirements can fill out the application form.
Once approved, you’ll also have to register as an apprentice at the Department of Labor and Workforce Development and renew your apprenticeship every year until you complete the step.
All apprentices will learn:
- Electrical theory
- Electric code standards
- Blueprint reading
- Algebraic equation manipulation for electric circuits
- AC/DC currents
- Motors and Transformers
- First aid/safety/OSHA regulations
These are the schools offering training for future electricians:
5 Electrician Schools in Alaska
|Alaska Technical Center||834 4th Street, Kotzebue, AK 99752|
|AVTEC — Alaska’s Institute of Technology -Anchorage Campus||1251 Muldoon Road, Anchorage, Alaska 99504|
|AVTEC — Alaska’s Institute of Technology -Seward Campus||809 2nd Avenue, Seward, Alaska 99664|
|Ilisagvik College||100 Stevenson Street, PO Box 749, Barrow, Alaska 99723|
|University of Alaska||11120 Glacier Highway, Juneau, AK 99801|
Become a Journeyman or Residential Electrician
Everyone completing their apprenticeship period can become a journeyman or a residential electrician.
You’ll want to become a journeyman because you’ll be able to work on both residential and commercial properties.
A residential electrician can only work on residential properties.
Those who want to get their residential electrician diploma must complete 4,000 hours of work experience, and 500 of them can be classroom education.
Then you’ll have to apply to be admitted to the exam and you can fill out the online form.
If you pass your test, you’ll have to renew your license every other year, but there’s no need to continue your education as a residential electrician.
Journeymen, on the other hand, must complete 8,000 hours of field experience, but these can be broken down as follows:
- 6,000 hours worked in commercial and industrial locations
- less than 2,000 hours spent on residential properties
- 1,000 hours can be spent in a classroom
Once you complete your hours, you must apply to be admitted to sit through an exam and you can schedule it after getting approved.
Journeymen must continue their education and renew their license every 2 years.
Continued education consists of:
- 16 hours of education
- 8 hours of those must be a review of the National Electric Code.
These hours must be completed in the 24 months before the renewal of the license.
Becoming an Independent Electrical Contractor
This is not a mandatory step but is something you may want in the future.
There are 2 steps involved here:
- hiring an electrical administrator, though you can become one yourself
- get the Alaska Business License
For the first step, you fill out a form in which you select a specific category of administrator:
- Unlimited commercial wiring
- Unlimited line work outside
- Residential Wiring
- Controls and Control wiring
- Inside Communications
- Outside Communications
You also have to have these documents:
- A resume with specific experience for your category
- References from at least 3 people, where the experience can be verified
- An official transcript from the school (university, college, or trade school)
You’ll also have to pass the PSI exam.
Once you’ll have your license as an electrical administrator, you’re required to continue your education and renew your license every second year.
To obtain the Alaska Business License, you’ll follow these steps:
- Register your business and get your Alaska entity number.
- Apply for the business license.
- Renew this license either every year or every two years.
You can choose how often you renew this business license when you apply for it.
You can find the business registration form and the application for the business license online.
When you complete all these steps, you’ll be an electrical contractor in Alaska.