This blog was written by Your Skills. Your Future. student ambassador Will Critchfield.
Zap! Ow! Electricians are often looked upon as people who play and handle electricity, but there’s more to them than meets the eye. They provide experiments and examine results to find solutions. Not only do electricians find problems, they use their understanding and skills to fix each problem. Electricians deal with electricity a lot, but they are more than advanced-Benjamin Franklins. They also work with machines, and if a motor stopped working, they could examine it and maybe provide a solution. If an outlet in a house wasn’t working correctly, they could use tools to find out the root of the problem. They must also be aware of what they are dealing with.
All electricians start somewhere, whether it was taking apart a computer as a child or holding onto an electric fence. Every kid has experienced some sort of electric shock, even if it was the static off of a birthday balloon. This experience prompts a lot of people to get curious about electricity. Growing up I, myself even performed magic tricks using the force of static electricity. Not only is an electrician using math to calculate voltages, they also look into science and how the electricity flows.
Many electricians excel in math and/or science. However, they must also have smarts within the job-site. Like any job, hands-on experience usually beats book knowledge, but learning the ropes can be tough. Figuring out state and local building regulations is a huge rule electricians must follow on their job. If they don’t follow this code, they could be fired, and their work would have to be redone. So, electricians must follow rules not only on how much voltage a battery can hold, but on how many wires they can have and where they can have them.
Electricians almost always color-code their wires to help out with clarity in the project. This is so, if they aren’t there, the next person isn’t stuck wondering which wires are hot or not. This is represented in famous movie scenes where the characters have to defuse a bomb and there are three wires and they are struggling to figure out which one to cut. This is why electricians use this method and rules. Sure, they could figure out if wires were hot or not, but it’s much easier to just know by color and that second electrician that comes along really appreciates it.
Electric companies are everywhere and always looking for new employees. The companies must ensure that the proper amount of electricity is flowing into each house that the company provides for. They must bill them accordingly, and most importantly they must produce electricity. It can be produced several ways; a few are water pressure, like dams producing electricity. Windmills are another source of electricity. There are many ways to produce it, and companies around the world flourish with it. A company near a river might use the dam as their source, whereas a company near open plains may use windmills. We’ve advanced a lot from the lightning age.
There’s also that chance the electrician makes a mistake or maybe doesn’t know how to correctly do their job. Too much voltage sent to a circuit or breaker, luckily, there are safetys implemented that cut off the source before anything bad can happen; electricians invented that as well! Mistakes can start electrical fires, destroy outlets, and even destroy whatever is plugged into them. Computer drives, vacuum cleaners, grandma’s favorite lamp, all could be destroyed from an unsafe use of electricity.
Electricians are also used in the army to work on vehicles, in the navy to work on submarines, and the air force to work on planes. It’s not just working in people’s houses or inside a dam. They are used everywhere. Electricity is used in almost everything today, phones, cars, streetlights even. It’s crazy to think how much electricity has influenced today. Carpenters use electric tools, phones are one of the biggest advancements the world has seen, and that would be impossible without the use of electricity. The point of all this is, when you think of electricians, you shouldn’t put the career away just because you don’t want to get shocked or zapped. Electricians are trained, and they have a part to do in practically everything. Lights, Cameras, you name it; electricians had a hand in making it happen.
Electricians all in all are masters of the electric world. Providing safe use of electricity and providing solutions to problems that have data to back up and reason it. If you’re ever unsure about a career choice, picking an electrician is definitely not your worst option, the pay is good, and if you work at it, you could own your own company one day.