It is a well known fact that the 2 best paid trades around are for plumbers and sparkies; and the reason for a plumber’s high wage is obvious to anyone familiar with indoor plumbing, but if all that an electrician has to face on a daily basis is the occasional set of shocking circuitry, why don’t more Gen-Y kids take on an electrician apprenticeship.
Being an electrician is quite dangerous, even beyond live electrical currents there are situational hazards, with fuses and wiring usually being out of the way or in the walls, cramped spaces, darkness and long falls are constant dangers.
The reason kids aren’t falling over each other to sign up is the screening process. To be an electrician’s apprentice you need both physical fitness, hand eye coordination, mathematical and sometimes customer service skills. Reaching year 12 is an advantage over fellow applicants, however the stigma about trades being for the unintelligent make school graduates favor University.
Finally there’s the usual issue of apprenticeships and that is the wait time. An apprentice will have to study both practical and theoretical knowledge for either 3 or 4 years in order to make the average $950 a week. This may not seem like much but for a kid right out of year 12, with friends already making 3rd year apprentice or full time salaries, it’s a hard fact to face.
With the rise of computers also comes the rise in need for electricians, and where there are electricians there are electrician apprenticeships. However, the problems involved with being a junior sparky tend to build up and the increased wages don’t seem so glamorous after your 100th shock, though those who manage to stick with it have learned a trade for life, have a respectable salary, and some extremely useful household skill.