Updated December 2023
With the construction industry booming and large numbers of older workers retiring, the time is right to begin a career in the skilled trades.
While there is currently high demand for many occupations related to construction, new grads still have to compete for great jobs. Choosing to learn two trades is an excellent strategy for maximizing your opportunities in the job market.
Plus, higher-paying positions sometimes demand a combination of skills that come from two different trades. Electrician and network cabling is a perfect example.
These are two related trades that can boost your employment options if you have skills in both areas. That's why Herzing College offers a combined electrician and network cabling program.
In this post, we'll walk you through the advantages of combined training and why these two trades go hand in hand.
1. Expand your job options with Electrician + Network Cabling Training
Numerous opportunities exist for both electricians and network cabling technicians to service the large number of new residential, commercial, and public infrastructure developments happening in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area).
Both of these trades deal with ensuring the functionality of wires and cables so that signal transmissions or electric current can effectively pass through.
Construction and maintenance electricians lay out, assemble, install, test, troubleshoot and repair electrical wiring, control devices, fixtures, and other components. This includes connecting wires to form circuits in fixtures and sometimes replacing faulty components in electrical systems.
Network cabling technicians focus on installing and servicing the cables related to data and voice connections with different types of media and networks.
Obviously, these trades are closely related. Electricians with network cabling skills (and vice versa) are valuable assets on any job site.
Training in both areas qualifies you for electrician work, network cabling jobs, or projects that require a blend of both skills.
2. Combined Trades Training Improves Your Earning Potential
When comparing the earning potential of different trades, electricians regularly rank near the top and network cabling specialists also earn very well.
Exact amounts will of course vary depending on where you work and your level of experience. However, if you add a secondary skillset to your resume - especially one that is particularly compatible, as these two are - you can command a higher salary.
Tradespeople with network cabling + electrician pre-apprenticeship training can choose to pursue a range of careers, including:
- Construction Electrician
- Industrial Electrician
- Telecommunication Contractor
- Fire Alarm Technician
- CATV Technician
- Network Cabling Specialist Technician
- Communications Cabling
- Electrical Contractor
- Fibre Optics Installation
- Industrial Motor Controls
Students who choose combined trades training graduate with a wider set of skills, more jobs to choose from, and better earning potential.
3. Network Cabling and Electrician Skills Go Hand in Hand
Having skills in both network cabling and electrician work will make you a more knowledgeable and well-rounded technician in whichever type of employment you choose.
While each specialty has its own unique focus, both trades deal with the proper functioning of equipment that most people don't see or understand: the wiring that powers our homes and cities and the telecommunications systems we rely on heavily, every single day.
The skills for both occupations are quite similar, including:
- Reading and interpreting reference diagrams, blueprints, or manuals
- Understanding how electrical/cabling equipment and systems work together
- Selecting the right kind of cabling or tubing for the job
- Testing and repairing wiring, connections, or electrical components
- Following building codes and industry standards
- Following electrical safety protocols
For example, cabling technicians need an understanding of electrical theory to do their job well. They need to know how circuits are formed and how signals are transmitted on copper wire.
The deeper their knowledge in this area, the better. Network cabling training on its own covers the basics. But a combined network cabling + electrician program goes much deeper.
Students leave the program with a much stronger grasp of key concepts, including:
- The Canadian Electrical Code
- How to build an electrical circuit
- How to apply Ohm’s Law and Kirchhoff’s Law
- How to install electrical equipment
- How to troubleshoot wiring and cabling problems
4. Combined Network Cabling + Electrician Training Provides Career Flexibility
Besides the expanded job opportunities and earning potential, possessing expertise in two valuable trades gives you additional career flexibility.
Knowledge is power: the power to choose where you want to work, what kind of work-life balance you want, and how you want to build your career.
Your extra capabilities will open more doors, giving you the opportunity to choose the projects that are more enjoyable, interesting, or convenient.
Many graduates with pre-apprenticeship training in Ontario eventually decide to open their own business. Being your own boss as a self-employed technician has its own challenges, but also many rewards - including greater earning potential.
With knowledge as both an electrician and network cabling technician, you can discover your own niche and embark upon an even more rewarding career path.
Explore Herzing's Combined Electrician + Network Cabling program
Want to learn more about the electrician and network cabling program? Your next step is to speak with admissions.
An admissions advisor will guide you through courses, costs, financial aid, how to apply, and more. They will discuss your background and career goals and help you determine if this program makes sense for you.
Click below to explore the training and chat live with an advisor today. We're here to help!