Opportunity Abounds in the Electrical Industry

It’s no secret that the trades, transportation, and utility industries are experiencing a pronounced skills gap. 450,000-plus job openings in these fields currently exist, and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that industry demands alone will necessitate a 10% job growth rate for electricians in the decade between 2019 and 2029. 


Further intensifying the shortage, 10,000 electricians of the baby boomer generation – those born between 1946-1964 – are retiring annually. However, only 7,000 newly-trained electricians are entering the workforce, resulting in a gap of 3,000


This vacuum needs to be filled, and soon. According to David Hardt, NECA president, electrical contractors “are turning down jobs because they do not have enough qualified electricians to complete the work. All signs point to shortages of skilled electrical workers intensifying in the near future.”

Former IBEW presidents, Edwin D. Hill, concurs. Before he left office in 2015, he predicted the predicament the industry now faces, stating, “The task ahead is not only to recruit and train more electricians to meet the needs of a growing industry but to make provisions to replace current electricians who will retire.”


Now, more than ever, Building Omaha’s nationally-recognized, earn-as-you-learn apprenticeship program is vital. 


It is an attractive alternative to the traditional four-year college route for many reasons. 


·      Scholarship funding is available to defray costs 

·      Learning takes place in Building Omaha’s 56,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Electrical Training Center 

·      You earn a wage as you learn the skills necessary to be a journeyman 

·      You are paired with a skilled tradesperson who will mentor you on your path to journeyman

According to Indeed.com, the Bureau of Labor Statistics ranks electricians as one of the top trades in high demand as well as one of the highest paying trade jobs. The variety of jobs electricians perform – electricians install and maintain anything that uses power in residential or commercial properties – means you will always be challenged, never bored.


Building Omaha is the partnership between the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). Our apprenticeship program produces the most qualified electrical workers in the industry. And membership in the IBEW Local 22 carries multiple, life-enhancing benefits for you and your family:


·      100% funded pension

·      100% funded health insurance for you and your family

·      Job security with 40-hour work weeks and employment with local contractors

·     Optional overtime opportunities

·     Higher wages

We invite you to learn more about the opportunities that await you in the electrical industry. Earn as you learn. Never get bored. Tackle challenges. Power the city. Build a beautiful career for a better future.  Visit ojeatc.com to apply for our apprenticeship program or call 402.331.3103 for more information.

Strengthening Our Community Connection

Community engagement is our passion. And one of the best ways we can connect with our local community is to promote career success – and all the benefits this brings – through education. 


Thus, Building Omaha has partnered with Omaha Public Schools (OPS) to help current high school students find career paths suited to their talents and interests. We feel it is important to have proactive conversations with students and their parents while students are determining their post-graduation plans.


A four-year college experience is just one option. Others include Building Omaha’s apprenticeship program, the largest apprenticeship, and training program of its kind in which students are paid while learning the electrical trade.


In the past, Building Omaha has participated in OPS’ Career Fair. However, for safety considerations, this annual event transitioned to a virtual speaker series, held Nov. 24th during the academic day.  One participant was Kevin Wetuski, training director of Omaha Joint Electrical Apprenticeship and Training Committee, in affiliation with Building Omaha. 


Kevin shared information about the bright future students could have in the electrical field, including Building Omaha’s Joint Apprenticeship Program between the National Electrical Contractor Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW).


As a hands-on, earn-while-you-learn advanced education for promising OPS high school graduates, participants receive paid on-the-job training, learning from seasoned electrical pros. They also attend class twice weekly. Scholarships are available, and participants have the option to choose from three- or five-year programs.  


Graduates of the Apprenticeship Program are among the finest and most highly trained electrical workers in the country. Curriculum adheres to the time-tested, standardized education programs developed by the Electrical Training ALLIANCE for the Electrical Industry, supporting both NECA and IBEW. 


Over 350,000 apprentices have advanced to journeyman status through local affiliate programs. We look forward to welcoming another apprenticeship class to our state-of-the-art training center, which has grown by 24,000-square feet, courtesy of our new expansion plan.  


Building Omaha is a partnership that powers our city. Its apprenticeship program will Power Your Future. And it will be a bright one with Building Omaha.


Visit OJEATC to learn more about our apprenticeship program.

Electrical Training Center Addition Brings More Jobs in 2021

Training center addition brings new high tech training and high wage opportunities to metro

It’s no secret that there has been a massive shortage of skilled trades workers in America in recent years that has led to a skills gap. Local non-profit Building Omaha is doing their part to promote the union electrical construction industry and train people for high-tech, high-benefits, and high-paying jobs.


In fact, a brand new Electrical Training Center coming to 8960 L Street in Omaha. The groundbreaking event was held Friday, October 23 from 10am-12pm. The new 24,000 square foot addition to their current training center will put the campus over 56,000 square feet. And it’s in high demand as they currently have a waiting list of nearly 300 for their apprentice programs.


America will face a shortage of electricians in the near future, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). The trade group says that 7,000 electricians join the field each year, but 10,000 retire. The BLS reports that employment of electricians is projected to grow 10% from 2018 to 2028 — faster than the average for all occupations. Their findings also show that skilled trades like electricians once again top the latest list of the most difficult-to-fill job openings.


“We’re excited to be able to offer training for more high paying jobs to our community in this high demand field,” said Allan Hale, National Electrical Contractors Association Executive Director. “We are proud of our apprentice program that equips people with skills, training and leadership they need to succeed. We are seeing a high demand for electricians in our market and our new training center addition will help us train more people to help handle the future needs of the area.”


College is not for everyone and joining the skilled trades is a great way for people to earn while they learn, all tuition-free. Their current training building was built beginning in 2002 with no major upgrades since the grand opening. Just over 1,000 have graduated from the programs since the building was opened, so it’s time to modernize and update.


About Building Omaha
The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) works together with The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) to provide their customers with the highest level of trained professionals in the electrical industry. Building Omaha (IBEW-NECA) is a nonprofit organization
established through a collective bargaining agreement devoted to promoting the union electrical construction industry through advertising, publicity, continuing education and a wide range of services to both the union and management members.

Building Omaha & Omaha Public Schools Create Career Opportunities for Students

Building Omaha is proud to have partnered with Omaha Public Schools. Through this strategic partnership, our goal is to provide students and their parents more options for the future after graduation. This includes non-traditional career paths such as apprenticeships.

The staff at Omaha Public Schools have recognized the plethora of jobs available for skilled workers, specifically in the electrical trades.

In addition to the surplus of career opportunities, OPS encourages students to look at options that fit their passions and learning style.

College is necessary for some professions, however, in many cases, students are left without jobs after graduation and end up in careers not requiring a degree after all. Many high school grads end up dropping out of college and opting for the trades due to its job security, benefits and pay, and job career satisfaction. Building Omaha and OPS aim to help students avoid the cost and frustration that four-year universities can bring to those who feel it’s their only option.

Many of Building Omaha’s most successful journeyman and apprentice electricians state they wish they would’ve learned about the electrical trades sooner.

In an effort to help the high school understand the great career & educational opportunities that await, Building Omaha sponsored an Electrical Industry Career Night at OPS. Students and parents were invited to come learn from the industry’s top professionals from NECA & IBEW.

Licensed journeymen, Jason Regan, along with a panel of experts, joined us to share their stories and participate in a Q&A for attendees.

The Career Night was a wonderful evening where students were equipped with information about on-the-job training and classroom learning as well as high school courses available to complete 1st-year requirements for an electrical apprenticeship.

The ability for kids to learn about these opportunities while in school, and have the chance to start learning the skills before they graduate is unmatched.

We are passionate about building up the future of electrical workers, and look forward to the future and possibilities that partnering with OPS can bring to the trades and to the Omaha community.

To learn more about career opportunities with Building Omaha, and hear from electrical apprentices click here.