May 22—WILLMAR — Ridgewater College will begin offering a new evening Electrician Technology Program in the fall.
The program meeting in late afternoon and evening will be offered on the college's Willmar and Hutchinson campuses.
Longtime Ridgewater electric instructor Leland Floren said in a news release the program would allow the college to address critical needs in the electrical industry and to accommodate working students.
A strong demand for electricians led Ridgewater to expand its Electrician Program to the Hutchinson campus in 2018.
According to information from the Minnesota State system, the projected Minnesota job growth outlook is about 9.5 percent. Central Minnesota's anticipated growth rate is higher at 12.3 percent, with current median electrician hourly wages at $35.55. The state's median hourly wage for all careers is $21.49.
The new 60-credit diploma option offers students the chance to work during the day and learn in the late afternoon and evenings.
The course includes a blended format of online lectures with in-person labs at the Willmar campus.
Future electricians in both program options will learn residential and commercial electrical work and industrial and maintenance installation in accordance with the National Electrical Code.
They'll practice working with motor controls; photovoltaic solar systems; transformers; specialized systems; heating, venting and air conditioning; energy-efficient lighting; and heating/cooling systems.
The traditional 83-credit Associate of Applied Science Electrician Degree and 74-credit diploma programs are also offered by Ridgewater.
To learn more about the college's electrician education programs, go to www.ridgewater.edu/electrician