Electric Companies Prepare Future Lineworkers
June 2021
It takes courage, commitment, and compassion to become a lineworker. It also takes plenty of training and education to ensure a lineworker has the right skills to perform the job safely. 

With this in mind, EEI’s member companies are preparing the workforce of tomorrow by providing apprenticeships and training opportunities to young people today. Lineworker jobs offer excellent pay and benefits, and they create great opportunities for people in the communities that electric companies are proud to serve.

Below are just a few examples of how electric companies are preparing the workforce of tomorrow and are creating job opportunities for people of all backgrounds.

(Photo Credit: Edison International) 

Duke Energy: New Program Prepares Next Generation of Florida Lineworkers 

When Stephen Magenheimer retired from Duke Energy after 35 years, he knew he wanted to help train the next generation of lineworkers. Now, he’s St. Petersburg College’s first instructor for its electrical lineworker training program. 

The 14-week program started in March, and students will graduate in July prepared for an entry-level job at an electric company with certifications in CPR, OSHA standards, and a commercial driver’s license. 

“I came up with a breed of very good linemen,” Magenheimer said, “and I was fortunate to be trained by some of the best linemen I have ever seen in my life. I just thought I’d try to start a trend where we build lineworkers from the ground up.” 

Classes are at the college’s Allstate Center campus at the new Power Florida Training Center, which was built with funding from PowerTown Line Construction and Duke Energy. 

Duke Energy donated $100,000 to develop the training facility, hire an instructor, and purchase classroom materials.  The company also provided $30,000 of equipment. 

Read more on Illumination, Duke Energy’s blog. 

Edison International: Lineworker Scholarship to Help Increase Diversity in Skilled Trades 

Edison International has launched its new Lineworker Scholarship program, in partnership with IBEW Local 47. Young people, particularly those who live in Black communities, are encouraged to apply. 

IBEW Local 47 is providing $50,000 per year toward the Lineworker Scholarship. Scholarship winners will attend Los Angeles Trade-Technical College’s six-month program to receive a Powerline Mechanic Certificate (additional classes may be needed for required prerequisites) and another program to obtain their Class A license. 

Tuition and needed tools will be covered by the scholarship. In addition to tuition and tools, the scholarship will cover support services as needed, such as transportation and childcare, through an agreement with Brotherhood Crusade, a charitable nonprofit. Program graduates also qualify for a job at Southern California Edison (SCE). 

Successful applicants who pass SCE’s new employee assessments will be eligible to start as groundmen. Edison International is using $1 million of shareholder funds for the four-year pilot to provide scholarships of up to $25,000 to expand diversity in its lineworker pipeline. 

Pepco and the District of Columbia Honor First D.C. Infrastructure Academy Graduates of 2021 

 Pepco and the District of Columbia's Department of Employment Services (DOES) celebrated the graduation of the latest cohort of the Pepco Utility Training School program with the D.C. Infrastructure Academy (DCIA) on May 13. 

Pepco and DOES held a virtual celebration during Infrastructure Week to recognize the graduates' achievements along with their families and friends. 

"I am honored to be a part of celebrating the first class of 2021 graduates of the DCIA Pepco Utility Training School Program," said DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. "These graduates have received quality training that has prepared them for high paying jobs of the future. Shining stars like them will lead our economic recovery." 

This first cohort of 2021 had 19 graduates, including three women. All of the graduates are on track to receive a job offer by June with Pepco or a Contractor of Choice. Including this latest cohort, more than 70 District residents have graduated from the Pepco Utility Training School at the DC Infrastructure and have been offered jobs since 2018. 

The electric power industry is responsible for more than 7 million American jobs in communities large and small. From supporting new skills training to STEM education to resources for veterans, women, youth, and adults, the industry is creating long-term solutions and driving employment for a skilled, diverse workforce in the future. Learn more on EEI’s Workforce webpage.