Tom G. is a 24 year old who completed a two-year degree in Electrical Technology. He did apprenticeship training as part of his degree requirements. Right after graduation he was hired by a manufacturing company as an electrical technician. Tom’s starting compensation package, including health care insurance, was $54,000.
Q. Why did you choose a technical program for your degree?
A. Throughout high school many other students talked about going “away” to college- meaning that they would literally go to another city or state to attend a big-name school. That costs a lot of money and for most, it required student debt. Many were interested in college majors that didn’t offer many job opportunities after graduation. I always liked learning about mechanical and electrical technologies. My dad was my best teacher of these subjects. Ongoing news articles in my home town talked about the urgent need for employees in the technical trades. For me, it was a natural fit.
Q. Are you happy with your career choice so far?
A. Yes. I like my job and the people I work with. There is opportunity for advancement and the company treats employees with respect.
Q. What are the main things you do in your job?
A. I work on the maintenance of non-vendor supported equipment to keep all systems in my department operating smoothly. I have to identify areas for improvement in cycle time and cost reductions. Following a designed problem-solving technique for equipment efficiency improvements is required. Of course, there are many other tasks, but I mentioned the major areas of responsibility.
Q. How are you doing financially?
A. Very good! I participate to the max with the company’s 401k plan, I have a supplemental retirement account, and I add to my savings account with each paycheck.
Anatomy of Tom’s Career Choice
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, electrical and electronics engineering technicians is a growth area at least through 2026. The current median annual salary is $64,330, plus benefits.
In general, trades jobs are available in many industries, especially manufacturing, transportation, and construction.
Electrical technology is a good choice in terms of compensation and job security. Also, it is possible to transfer certain earned college credits into a bachelor’s degree program. Many companies offer tuition assistance for such advanced learning.
Tom is well positioned to begin his journey on the pathway to true prosperity.
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