Trenholm State partners with Alabama utilities to offer new lineworker training program

Trenholm State partners with Alabama utilities to offer new lineworker training program
Trenholm State Community College will begin taking applications for its new lineworker training program in August. (Wynter Byrd / Alabama NewsCenter)

Trenholm State Community College joined with representatives from Alabama Power, Alabama Rural Electric Association, Central Alabama Electric Co-Op and Dixie Electric Co-op on Monday to sign a memorandum of understanding launching a program to train students as electric utility lineworkers.

Through the nine-week course, students learn fundamentals of electricity as well as math and science needed to work on power lines. In addition to classroom instruction, students receive hands-on practice in an outdoor learning laboratory, honing their new skills so they are job-ready upon graduation.

“Trenholm State’s new lineworker training program is an exciting addition to the college’s workforce training efforts and will help individuals obtain well-paying jobs to make a better life for themselves and their families,” said Trenholm State Acting President Kemba Chambers. “I’m grateful to the Alabama Community College System and our utility partners for working alongside us as we develop this in-demand program that will yield positive outcomes for the River Region.”

Trenholm State launches lineworker training program from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

According to Emsi, more than 500 lineworker jobs are available in the Montgomery area with a median annual salary of $84,606.

“This program will be a gateway to a better future for our community because it opens doors to new opportunities for Montgomery area residents,” said Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed. “Those who enroll will receive advanced training that increases their access to great-paying jobs and careers that benefit not only the graduates but also their families.”

Students will learn technical and safety skills required to gain employment as a utility lineworker, including pole climbing and working aloft, electricity, mechanized equipment, ladder safety and commercial driver’s license training. Additionally, students will learn essential skills such as resume writing, interview preparation, interpersonal skills, CPR and first aid.

As part of its commitment to workforce development, Alabama Power has also partnered with community colleges to offer lineworker training programs in Birmingham and Mobile.

“We’re excited to work alongside Trenholm State and other utility partners to offer lineworker training in the Montgomery area,” said Jeff Peoples, Alabama Power executive vice president of Customer and Employee Services. “Through this program, students gain the skills and hands-on training needed for meaningful careers in our industry.”

At the announcement of Trenholm State Community College are, from left, Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees Chairman Milton Davis, Montgomery Mayor Steve Reed, Trenholm State Acting President Kemba Chambers, Alabama Power Executive Vice President Jeff Peoples, Alabama Power Southern Division Vice President Leslie Sanders and representatives from Central Alabama Electric Cooperative and Dixie Electric Cooperative. (Wynter Byrd / Alabama NewsCenter)

Alabama Rural Electric Association President and CEO Karl Rayborn said, “AREA is excited about working with Trenholm to provide an introduction to a career that is full of job opportunities, which allows the individual to work outdoors and grow both as an individual and professionally.”

Dixie Electric Cooperative President and CEO Gary Harrison agreed. “As an employer in the community, we see this program as an incredible asset to both us and any local students who wish to pursue a career as a lineworker,” he said. “We hope that having a school of this nature right in our backyard will offer us, and other electric utilities, a large pool of well-qualified candidates for many years to come.”

“We welcome training that offers opportunity to introduce the next generation to the challenging and respected career of utility linework,” added Central Alabama Electric Cooperative President and CEO Tom Stackhouse.

Program participants must be 18 or older and have earned a high school or GED diploma. Eligibility will be determined by the ability to meet essential job functions.

Applications will be accepted Aug. 1-Sept. 11, 2021, with the program beginning in January 2022. The program cost is about $4,150. Financial assistance and scholarships may be available.

Class size is limited. Click here to learn more.

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