How to Become an Electrician in Vermont: The Essential Guide
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Being an electrician isn’t just a job, it’s a solid career path. Electrical contractors enjoy a wide range of employment opportunities and earn a respectable income. There’s also job security—customers will always need skilled trade professionals to install and service electrical systems in their homes and businesses.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are 711,200 electricians nationwide and 1,040 work in Vermont. The national number is predicted to grow 7% from 2021 to 2031 and that growth rate is expected to be twice that in Vermont—projected at 14%, according to CareerOneStop, the U.S. Department of Labor’s job search website.Many contractors nationwide are trying to find skilled tradesmen.
According to the Associated General Contractors of America, 2020 AGC-Autodesk Workforce Survey, 60% of firms in the U.S. had unfilled hourly craft positions like plumbers, electricians, and HVAC technicians. So, if you get the training you need you will have a lot of jobs to choose from when you’re ready. The process of becoming an electrician takes time, but you get paid while you learn and gain experience!
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License Requirements for Electricians in Vermont
Is a state license required to be an electrician in Vermont? Yes.
The Vermont Electrical Board, a subsidy of the Department of Public Safety’s Division of Fire Safety, is responsible for issuing electrical licenses in the state of Vermont. Apprentice electricians need to register with the Vermont Department of Labor.
Steps to Get Electrician Certification in Vermont
Gain necessary hands-on work experience and required classroom training.
Become an electrical journeyman or specialist electrician.
Earn a master electrician license.
How to Become an Electrician in Vermont
GAIN NECESSARY EXPERIENCE: Like many other states, Vermont offers several ways to become a licensed journeyman electrician.
Graduate from a trade school or military program and gain 8,000 hours of work experience under the supervision of a licensed electrician.
Complete 576 hours of classroom-based training, as well as 8,000 hours of full-time work experience through an approved Vermont apprenticeship program, or a union-based apprenticeship through the Vermont Joint Apprentice and Training Committee (JATC), which is an affiliate of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.
Accumulate 12,000 hours of documented relevant experience, including signed affidavits from previous employers.
Specialist electricians must complete a one-year training program and accumulate 2,000 hours of full-time work experience. Otherwise, specialist electrician applicants must have 4,000 hours (two years) of documented electrical work experience.
BECOME A JOURNEYMAN OR SPECIALIST ELECTRICIAN: After gaining the experience to earn a journeyman license or a specialist electrician license and passing the necessary exams, you can submit the license application to the Division of Fire Safety. There is a $115 licensing fee. Both journeyman and specialist electrician licenses remain valid for three years. Renewal requires 15 hours of continuing education. There are detailed instructions for applying for an electrician license on the state website too.
EARN A MASTER ELECTRICIAN LICENSE: In order to become a master electrician, you must hold a journeyman electrician license for at least two years. Or, you can earn a master electrician license by accumulating 16,000 hours of documented work experience. Applying for a master electrician license costs $150. Master electrician licenses remain valid for three years. Renewal requires 15 hours of continuing education.
Types of Electrical Licensure in Vermont
Specialist Electrician: Generally has 2,000 hours of work experience in addition to completing a one-year training program. If an applicant doesn’t complete a formal training program, they must provide proof of 4,000 hours (two years) of related work experience. Specialist electricians work on specialty electric projects, such as farm equipment, well pumps, refrigeration and air conditioners, and more.
Journeyman Electrician: Usually has four years, or 8,000 hours, of documented work experience, accompanied by classroom training or military experience.
Master Electrician: Supervises electrical installations and has at least two years of prior experience as a licensed journeyman, or a total of 16,000 hours of documented electrical trade work experience.
Benefits of Becoming a Licensed Electrician in Vermont
There are many benefits you’ll see from pursuing a Vermont electrician license:
Most importantly, Vermont requires an electrician license to legally perform electrical work. Properly trained electricians throughout the United States are well-versed in fire prevention measures, as well as electrical distribution systems.
A trade license is proof of your experience and skill.
Only certified electricians can: operate a business and advertise services, obtain commercial insurance, pull building permits, pass inspections, and bid on public and government projects.
A license protects your company and customers.
Licensure gives you a competitive advantage in the job market.
It also increases your earning potential.
What Is the Mean Wage for an Electrician in Vermont?
The annual mean wage for electricians in Vermont is $52,200 per year according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics. That salary, as you might expect, increases as you acquire more experience, according to Indeed.com.
Electrician Apprentice: The average salary for an electrician apprentice is $20.42 per hour in Vermont and $6,000 overtime per year.
Electrician: The average salary for an electrician apprentice is $33.21 per hour in Vermont and $9,438 overtime per year.
Master Electrician: The average salary for an electrician apprentice is $30.28 per hour in Vermont.
Salary ranges can vary widely, depending on the city and many other important factors, including education, certifications, additional skills, and the number of years you have spent in your profession.
What Business Owners Need to Know
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Required forms that ensure every job is done right, driving consistency.
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Sales presentations that make conversations with customers easier and drive average ticket.
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How Much Does It Cost for Electrician Licensing in Vermont?
Vermont Technical College, a leading technical school in the state of Vermont, charges about $15,292 per year for in-state students. In addition to the cost of tuition, potential electricians also need to pay fees to the licensing board and testing center.
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How Long Does It Take to Get an Electrician Certification in Vermont?
You can earn a specialist electrician license in about two years and a journeyman license in about four years. After holding a journeyman license for two years, you are eligible to become a master electrician.
Vermont Electrician Training Programs and Schools
Vermont Technical College has campuses located throughout the state, including Randolph Center, Williston, Bennington, Newport, and White River Junction.
Courses typically taught at Vermont electrical trade schools include:
Current Edition of the National Electrical Code (NEC)
Grounding and Wiring
Wiring Protection Devices
Electrical Boxes, Receptacles and Switches
Electrical Circuits and Systems
Wiring a Residence to NEC and IRC Codes
Program Prerequisites: Program prerequisites vary. Most programs, however, require you to be 18 years old, have a high-school diploma or GED, a valid driver’s license, and pass an aptitude test.
On-the-Job Experience: While on the job you will gain an understanding of electrical standards, as well as math and scientific principles. Electricians need keen eyesight and good hand-eye coordination, as well as proper time management skills. They also have to have good customer service skills, be able to work independently, have good physical endurance, and use logical problem-solving techniques. Electricians also learn how to read blueprints, circuit diagrams, and other technical documents.
Vermont Electrician Licensing Exam Details
Pearson VUE administers the journeyman electrician exam and there is a $65 exam fee. The journeyman exam contains 90 questions that you must answer within four hours. The exam is open-book and applicants can reference the National Electrical Code (NEC), the State of Vermont’s Electrical Safety Rules, and Ugly’s Electrical Reference.
Exam topics include:
Services and Service Equipment
Branch Circuits and Conductors
Wiring Methods and Materials
Equipment and Devices
Motors and Generators
Special Occupancies, Equipment, and Conditions
Pearson VUE also administers exams for specialist electricians. There are several different types of exams for specialist electricians, including:
Automatic Gas and Oil Heating
Outdoor Advertising Signs
Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Electrical
Appliance and Motor Repairs
Electrical Well Pumps
Electric Farm Equipment
Commercial Fire Alarm
Household Fire Detection and Alarm
Gas Pump Installation and Bulk Plant Works
Electric Lock Installation
Master electrician exams, administered by Pearson VUE, cost $65. The exam consists of 105 multiple-choice questions that you need to answer within five hours. The exam covers the same topics as the journeyman exam, and you may use the same reference materials. Candidates can also prepare for the master electrician exam by viewing the candidate information bulletin provided by the International Code Council (ICC).
Who Issues Electrician Licenses in Vermont?
The Department of Public Safety’s Division of Fire Safety is responsible for issuing electrical licenses in the state of Vermont. It also regulates plumbers and contractor licenses.
Does My Vermont Electrical License Work in Any Other State?
Yes! Vermont has reciprocity agreements with New Hampshire and Maine for both journeyman and master electrician licenses.
You need to renew your Vermont electrician license every two years. Renewal of a master license costs $150, a journeyman costs $115, and a specialty costs $115. License renewal requires 15 hours of continuing education.
National Electrician Certifications
While optional, national certifications can help you demonstrate your proficiency in certain aspects of the electrical trade to potential employers and clients, which often translates into more job opportunities and higher pay.
These include the Independent Electrical Contractors Certified Professional Electrician (CPE) distinction, certification through the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), among dozens of additional electrician certifications available.
You can stay up to date on all electrician industry news in several ways: