The Journey of Becoming an Electrician Through Trade Schools in New York

Most people decide early on that they don’t want to go to a four-year college. They worry about what type of career they can get without formal education and are often surprised when they learn trade schools in New York can help them become an electrician. 

Why might you attend electrician school in NY? These vocational schools help you learn the basics so that you are prepared for your career. From there, you often find an apprenticeship program to get on-the-job training.

How to Become an Electrician in NY

Generally, people choose trade schools in New York for electricians to help them get the necessary experience needed to do the job. That’s the first step in becoming a master or journeyman electrician. However, you should check with the local licensing board to determine if you must apply for a New York electrical license. 

Rochester residents require a 3,000-hour minimum in the electrical trade, and master electricians need four years of experience with electrical wiring and 6,000 hours of work. 

Syracuse master electricians require 10 years of experience, but limited electricians only need five years. 

Overall, the licensing requirements vary based on jurisdiction, and there are no statewide regulations in place. It’s always better to become licensed because you’re seen as trustworthy and highly competent. 

Do you want a new career? Fill out the form below to find information about an electrical training course that meets your needs. 

What’s an Electrician Apprenticeship?

An apprentice electrician doesn’t work on energized equipment or circuits. However, they might operate hand tools and machinery and must always be supervised by a licensed electrician. 

Most programs have specific rules in place, such as being a resident of a particular jurisdiction, being 18 years old, and passing an aptitude test. Students often work as an apprentice for 5.5 years before branching out on their own or qualifying for a license. 

How to Become a Lineman in NY

Most trade schools focus on electrician training, but some are specific to linemen jobs. New York is the city that never sleeps, so it runs on 11,000 megawatt-hours of electricity each day. Times Square shows the sheer force of the lighting system within the city, and linemen often appreciate the inner workings of the electrical grid. 

Finding appropriate training is the first step on your journey to being a lineman. These schools often take less than a year to complete, but you’re allowed to work at your own pace. That means it might be a little longer or less time, depending on your other responsibilities. 

What’s a Lineman Apprenticeship?

Once you complete training from a vocational school, you want to join an apprenticeship program to get you the on-the-job skills you need. Most linemen require a CDL driver’s license to drive the large trucks, and it helps to have one already. 

Apprentices tend to make $39,000 to $59,000 a year, and that rises based on experience level. 

Reasons to Become an Electrician

It seems that everyone dreams of being an electrician, but why is that? Here are the top reasons for becoming one in New York: 

  • Potential for Great Pay – Electrical work pays more than other trades because most people don’t have that skill set. Therefore, it’s more valuable and in demand for clients. 
  • Job Security – It doesn’t matter what the economy does; people always need electricians. Therefore, you know you’ve got job security for the long haul, regardless of where you might go. 
  • Be Your Own Boss – Electricians can run their own companies once they get a license (if required in their jurisdiction). Once you’ve got referrals, a company vehicle, and supplies, you’re set to take jobs whenever you want. 
  • Interesting Working Conditions – Electrical work is tricky but rewarding. It requires problem-solving skills and the ability to think outside the box. 
  • Physical Activity – Most people don’t want to sit at a desk all day. They prefer hands-on, physical work to feel like they’re being productive. This is labor-intensive, so you’re squatting, moving, climbing ladders, and more. Get your workout in without having to set foot in a gym or be confined to one space. 
  • Well-respected Profession – Electricians are regarded as one of the top professions in the field. Everyone knows how much knowledge and skill they need to perform work correctly. Therefore, you can earn respect from others and establish yourself as the expert in your industry. 
  • Easy to Get Started – You don’t need a four-year college to get the information necessary to start working as an electrician. A simple trade school and an apprenticeship are all you need, making it less expensive and faster. 

Where Can You Thrive as an Electrician in New York? 

Once you obtain electrician certification from a trade school, you’re ready to become an apprentice and start working. New York is home to six top industries that drive growth, and you can be right at the heart of it all. Electricians make the world light up, and here are a few of the most popular industries to consider:

Financial Services 

Have you heard of a little thing called Wall Street? This is at the heart of the financial sector in New York, but there are plenty of banks and credit unions around. They’re often housed in large buildings and have battery systems and other electrical equipment that must be maintained and repaired.  

Most of these companies focus on energy efficiency, so electricians are needed to handle power assessments and determine where improvements can be made. Plus, they often have fans, lights, and air conditioning, so you’re always in high demand. 


New York has about 20 million people living there, and that means illness, pregnancy, and much more. There’s a huge demand for healthcare, and all of those doctor’s offices, clinics, and hospitals require electricians to keep the lights on and the machines running. In some cases, the equipment keeps people alive, so it has to work at all times.  

Electricians repair electrical equipment, replace wiring, and install/maintain appliances throughout the building. 


Did you know that New York exports many goods to foreign countries and other states? It’s the leader for railroad rolling stock, clothing, elevator parts, glass, and more. While most areas send their jobs overseas to pay lower taxes and hire more people, New York has shown a rise in technical manufacturing, which includes: 

  • Software engineering tools 
  • Video games 
  • Mobile devices 
  • 3-D printing machines 
  • Computer products 

Therefore, electricians are in high demand because they maintain, repair, and install all those electrical components in manufacturing plants and factories. 

Educational Services 

While most people don’t think of the educational sector when they focus on New York, it does have a huge impact on the residents and the state itself. These students are the future, and you can find various schools and colleges. Those buildings all have lighting systems, HVAC systems, and appliances that you’re in charge of to keep them running smoothly. 


The retail industry is also flourishing in New York. There are various: 

  • Clothing retailers 
  • Food and beverage locations 
  • Auto retailers 
  • Electronics retailers 

This means many different electrical systems to maintain, repair, upgrade, and install. 

Population Growth Statistics for New York

New York is the fourth-largest state within the US. It’s steadily been rising throughout the years and has seen a 2.1 percent increase since 2010. While that doesn’t seem like much, it indicates that people are continuing to move here for jobs, and electricians are sure to be in high demand. 

Here are a few of the current major building projects happening in the state: 

  • NYBC Center Applied Life Sciences Hub 
  • River North at Liberty Towers 
  • 495 Eleventh Avenue 
  • Acme Smoked Fish Factory 
  • 3875 Ninth Avenue 


There are plenty of electrical trade schools in NY, so it’s now time to find the right one for you. You might want to determine: 

  • The exact location of your school for transportation plans 
  • Accurate cost of schooling 
  • Textbook requirements 
  • Credit transferability between schools 

Fill out the form below to learn about all that for electrician programs in the state. 

You can also learn about the booming industries for electricians in these great cities: