Apprentice Training NTI

Training the Next Generation of Electrical Contractors

The construction industry could face a shortage of more than 1.6 million workers over the next half decade. Despite offering high wages for in-demand and highly skilled positions, 600,000 skilled jobs are going unfilled, and 10 million new tradespeople are needed by 2020. Southwire, among other forward-looking companies, is preparing young workers to fill that potential skills gap through training and apprenticeship programs. To build strong relationships with younger, less experienced electricians, we are collaborating with National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC) to train the next generation of electrical workers.

Through the electrical training ALLIANCE, NECA and the IEC, we support Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC) and SkillsUSA—vocational training programs for apprentice electricians across the country. Companies often donate supplies for continuing education and training events they host with industry partners. For example, we provide supplies for “wire-offs”—events in which electricians compete to wire systems. We also donate employee hours to train contractors through product demonstrations, events that often count for their continuing education requirements.

“In our 285 training centers across the country, we’re able to bring in the wire pulling and the latest technologies,” says Marty Reisberg of the electrical training ALLIANCE. “It’s very important to us that we work with Southwire to stay up on the technology.” By introducing each new generation of apprentices to our products, we maximize our efforts to make the industry safer and more sustainable.

In our value chain, we celebrate the same drive and commitment to training skilled workers. SkillsUSA recently recognized our customer, Lowe’s Home Improvement, for their gift of $1.5 million. Lowe’s has contributed $14 million to SkillsUSA over the last ten years. SkillsUSA success stories include high-school students, adult learners and multi-generational families who turned toward technical education experiences to find new or expanded opportunities. SkillsUSA programs led these participants to college scholarships, service work, second careers, travel, small-business ownership and greater employability and academic engagement. Skilled worker education is a community investment model we share with Lowe’s and others, as an opportunity to create shared value in our communities and in our business.

This shared value model benefits donor companies, future skilled workers and communities—companies help educate the upcoming generation of skilled workers, and these new electricians learn about groundbreaking products, which focus on their safety. By filling the skills gap with well-trained, safety-conscious tradespeople, Southwire, Lowe’s and others power the future of the American economy.


  1. I enjoyed this article and I am a huge fan and supporter of Southwire, but where is this data from? 10MM needed by 2020 should be better explained and qualified in the article in my opinion.

    Keep up the great work!

  2. Thomas A.(Tommy)Branson

    I am a 35 year electrician who lives in Carrollton,I would enjoy helping to teach young electricians,if I could assist please contact me

  3. Good training is so important these days…with technology rapidly improving it is critical to have all of your technicians completely up to date when servicing your clients. And, obviously your clients will appreciate a knowledgeable technician that can answer questions and get the job done quick!

  4. Nice post to share and read. I am a well-certified electrician working as an online electrical training expert in Australia.

    Thank you so much for this wonderful post. Electrical training from a well-certified centre is important. As we know technology is growing at a fast pace so it is very important to keep yourself updated with the latest technologies.

  5. Training and education are a big part of our company. Technology is advancing so quickly and just when you think you’ve become an expert on something, it becomes outdated. We want to offer the best services for our customers and staying up to date (or ahead) of the latest trends shows them that we care.

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  7. I believe there is going to still be a shortage for many years yet, training the next generation of electricians is very important, we are always going to need skilled electricians.

  8. Caleb Nicol

    How would one go about getting accepted into such a training program? I am looking to move out of higher education and into a trade. I’m tired of sitting behind a desk and want to work with me hands. I am just not exactly sure how to go about doing so.

  9. Nice Post and I was wondering when I read 10 million new tradespeople are needed by 2020. I really appreciate your time and effort to research and writing this good quality content only a few people out there who passinate to write some good stuff. Good job, keep doing it.

  10. We did training at the electrical training ALLIANCE a few years ago, a great team and amazing course to put the team through – made a huge difference to our own business and well worth the investment!

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