Electrical Trade Schools and Vocational Schools in the U.S.

Electricians work installing and maintaining electrical and, sometimes, other power systems. Vocational and trade schools for electricians often combine hands-on with classroom work. Students interested in becoming an electrician should pay special attention to the hands-on learning opportunities offered by the school selected.

How to Select an Electrical Trade or Vocational School

The apprenticeship program is possibly the most important aspect of any electrical trade or vocational school. These programs combine on-the-job training with in-class instruction and study. Local electrical businesses, as well as unions of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers are often affiliated with electrical trade and vocational schools, and seek out students for paid apprenticeships. The apprenticeship helps students learn both how to work with wires and electrical systems, and work as a team with other electricians. An electrical trade or vocational program often requires four years to complete and graduates are qualified for both electrical construction and maintenance positions.

The classroom portion of an electrical trade program can teach students how to work with blueprints, as well as the math and circuitry science required to work as an electrician. Students may use computer simulations of circuits to study electrical systems and to study such topics as ladder logic. While an apprenticeship is important, students should keep in mind that it is during the classroom portion of their studies that they will learn the fundamental theories of electrical science.

Many electrical trade schools are now offering specialized programs and courses in green technology as the U.S. looks toward the future of energy. Interested students may seek out a school which teaches maintenance, sustainability and regulations relating to renewable energy sources.

Schools by Overall Student Enrollment

College/University Student Population Institution Type
Houston Community College 48,169 2-year, Public
Michigan State University 46,510 4-year, Public
College of Southern Nevada 40,310 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
American River College 34,610 2-year, Public
Salt Lake Community College 29,396 2-year, Public
Tidewater Community College 26,898 2-year, Public
Palomar College 26,805 2-year, Public
Florida State College at Jacksonville 25,903 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
El Paso Community College 25,818 2-year, Public
Palm Beach State College 25,122 4-year, Public
Oakland Community College 24,957 2-year, Public
Central New Mexico Community College 24,870 2-year, Public
Hillsborough Community College 24,037 2-year, Public
South Texas College 21,666 4-year, primarily associate's, Public
Weber State University 21,388 4-year, Public
Foothill College 19,485 2-year, Public
Lansing Community College 19,445 2-year, Public
Bakersfield College 19,287 2-year, Public
Rio Salado College 19,186 2-year, Public
Johnson County Community College 19,055 2-year, Public

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