SGTC Electrical Lineworker graduates continue to excel

Courtesy SGTC
Maurice Jordan Elw Graduated 3 2021

South Georgia Technical College Electrical Lineworker graduate Maurice Jordan is the latest in a long line of success stories from individuals who attended and graduated from the SGTC Electrical Lineworker Apprentice program and moved forward toward successful careers. He talks about his experience in this Georgia Power video: https://www.poweringcareers.com/careers/network-underground-services.html [poweringcareers.com].

Jordan is a Summer 2007 graduate of the SGTC eight-week Electrical Lineworker program and he is currently employed with Georgia Power’s Network Underground division. This department provides the construction and maintenance services for the Network Underground Electrical Systems located in Metro Atlanta, Augusta, Savannah, Macon, Columbus, Athens, Valdosta and other spot Network Systems throughout Georgia. Employees provide a highly reliable electric service to customers in high-rise buildings, hospitals, government agencies and business complexes.

Jordan came to South Georgia Technical College after high school as a result of a special partnership with Dekalb Workforce and Georgia Power. He excelled on the CAST (Construction and Skilled Trade Test) and a physical abilities assessment and was selected to attended the Electrical Lineworker Program at South Georgia Technical College in Americus. He was employed with Georgia Power after graduation.
“The best part of my career is that I get to work with a group of guys that care about me genuinely,” said Jordan. “We all take care of each other and we definitely believe in being your brother’s keeper. I know that my buddies are going home safe to their families and I am going home safe to my family.”

Jordan is quick to tell people that he started out on a line crew with Georgia Power, but that he switched to the Network Underground division. “Once you get here, you discover that they are a lot of opportunities available at Georgia Power,” said Jordan. “You can go from Engineering to Line Crew to Network to Transmission to Substation. There are just endless opportunities for everyone. We provide a needed service for our customers.”

South Georgia Technical College (SGTC) began its eight-week Electrical Lineworker Apprentice Certificate Training program in 2005 in response to industry demands to help students obtain entry-level employment with regional utility companies.

The eight-week class consists of classroom, skills field, and observation-based on-the-job training. 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 GED and must obtain a Class A CDL Instructional Permit before enrollment.

In the classroom, 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 lineworkers 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 is committed to providing its Electrical Lineworker students with many of the opportunities and experiences that they will encounter in this career field,” said SGTC President Dr. John Watford. “South Georgia Tech developed the training curriculum with input from representatives from electrical companies. Many of these same individuals serve on the advisory board for this program to ensure that training remains effective and relevant.”

Over the past 15-years, South Georgia Tech has trained hundreds of students who have been hired in the electrical industry. The college hosts between two to four, eight-week classes annually, depending on job availability and the needs of employers. Each class has between 12 to 16 students.

The 12-semester hour, eight-week class meets Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. In the classroom, students learn about the AC/DC electrical theory, field training, occupational safety, team work, 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 Bucket and Line trucks and trailers that carry the 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 $1531. Georgia residents are eligible for the HOPE Grant and HOPE Career Grant. Out of pocket cost for the HOPE eligible students is $119 plus dorm fees, if applicable. South Georgia Tech provides text books at no cost, hard hats and safety goggles and vests. Students do have to purchase workbooks, boots and gloves.

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 tblount@southgatech.edu.