How to Become an Electrician or Electrical Engineer

A career in the electrical field can be highly lucrative and stable. You’ll also be providing a service that helps people maintain access to their power sources. If you want to work as an electrician or electrical engineer, here are a few steps that you should take to enter the field.

Pick an Area of Expertise

There are many types of electricians and electrical engineers, so choosing a specialty that interests you will be important in the early stages of your career pursuit. You can decide to become an electrician who exclusively serves homes or businesses in your area. If you want to work in a more advanced field, pursuing a career as a master electrician may be to your liking. As an electrical engineer, you can choose to work in the avionics, mechatronics, or biomedical electronics fields.

Get the Right Training

Getting the right amount of education and completing an apprenticeship program will be important. Even though there are no specific education requirements to become a residential or commercial electrician, attending a vocational school and earning a degree or certificate will better prepare you to fill a position. According to, a bachelor’s degree is generally required for electrical engineers. An apprenticeship program may take four years or longer to complete, but you can still get paid as you learn.

Obtain a License

Once you’ve fulfilled the education and additional training requirements, you should study toward earning a license. Most states require electricians to be licensed, and you’ll earn your license by passing an examination. To take your examination, you’ll need to submit an application and pay a fee. If you’re still in an apprenticeship program, a license may or may not be required for you depending on your state.

Choose between Being Self-Employed or a Company Employee

There are several pros and cons to each scenario. If you want a job that has a guaranteed salary and provides additional benefits, you’ll likely want to get hired by a company that employs you as one of their permanent staff members. However, if you prefer working alone and being your own boss, you’ll probably be happier with the self-employment option. If you choose to become a self-employed professional, you may need to get an additional business license to work legally.

There are many advantages to becoming an electrician or electrical engineer. The skills and knowledge that you attain through training can be put to good use as you embark on your career.

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