Georgia Power Regional VP tours South Georgia Technical College Electrical Lineworker program and skills field
Published 2:00 pm Thursday, June 30, 2022
From Staff Reports
AMERICUS – Audrey King, Vice President for Georgia Power South Region, toured South Georgia Technical College and the college’s Electrical Lineworker Program recently with SGTC President Dr. John Watford and Don Porter, Georgia Power local manager and SGTC Board of Directors member and immediate past chairman.
King met with Dr. Watford and talked about Georgia Power’s immediate workforce needs and thanked him and South Georgia Technical College for their partnership. She also commended Dr. Watford and South Georgia Technical College for initiating the Electrical Lineworker Apprentice eight-week training program that is helping bridge Georgia Power’s workforce gap.
King and Porter also toured Ignite College and Career Academy at Sumter County Schools for a special signing ceremony for Jahara Mays, who was selected into the Georgia Power Internship Program. Mays is the first Sumter County Schools student selected for this honor and will be attending the SGTC Electrical Lineworker program.
Georgia Power and other power companies including the area Electric Membership Cooperatives and Crisp County Power Company have been integral in implementing and supporting the SGTC Electrical Lineworker Program. The SGTC program consists of eight weeks of classroom, skills field, and observation-based on-the-job training.
The Electrical Lineworker Program provides regional utility companies with a much-needed workforce as well as great opportunities for graduates of the program. The SGTC program has been in continuous operation since 2005 and has supplied hundreds of graduates with the skills needed to obtain entry-level employment with regional utility companies.
The program is open to anyone who is interested in obtaining employment as an Electrical Lineworker Apprentice. Admission requirements include: at least 18 years of age, must have obtained a high school diploma or equivalency and must obtain a Class A CDL Instructional Permit before enrollment.
Students receive training on the proper use of lineworker tools, lineworker simulation, power industrial truck operation, and electrical safety. The skills field training includes learning to climb poles safely, working on electrical connections at high altitudes, and the operation of power trucks and trailers and other equipment. During the observation-based training, students are able to observe 30 hours of lineworker’s performing their job duties with partnering power companies. Students are guaranteed a job interview with utility companies upon successful completion of the program.
“South Georgia Technical College developed the training curriculum for this program with input from representatives from electrical companies. Many of these same individuals serve on the advisory board for this program to insure the training remains effective and relevant,” explained President Watford.
The 12-semester hour, eight-week class meets Monday through Thursday. In the classroom, students learn about the AC/DC electrical theory, field training, occupational safety, teamwork, line construction theory, line clearance, rigging, transformers, basic telecommunications, and utility metering.
Approximately two-thirds of the program is devoted to strenuous hands-on skills allowing students to develop a high degree of proficiency in the electrical lineworking equipment and procedures. All SGTC Electrical Lineworker students have the opportunity to earn a CDL Class A or B license as part of the program. To be employed as an electrical lineworker, students must be able to drive the specialized utility trucks and trailers carrying electrical poles.
South Georgia Technical is one of only two technical colleges in Georgia with on-campus housing. Lineworker students can live on-campus in double-occupancy rooms for $1350 each for the eight-week class. That price includes 19 meals per week, access to free WIFI and cable TV. The cost of the 12-hour program is currently $1546. Georgia residents are eligible for the HOPE Grant and HOPE Career Grant. Out of pocket cost for the HOPE eligible students is $134 plus dorm fees, if applicable.
For more information about the Electrical Lineworker program at South Georgia Technical College or to apply for the next class, contact Tami Blount at 229-931-2040 or firstname.lastname@example.org. SGTC is currently registering students for Fall Semester. Classes begin August 18th and it is not too late to apply. Financial aid is available.