On June 6, 73 electricians graduated from the Independent Electrical Contractors Rocky Mountain Four-Year Electrical Apprentice Program in a special graduation ceremony at the Westin in Westminster, Colorado. The audience of more than 400 spectators included family members, friends, spouses, instructors, employers, and staff. The graduation ceremony, awards, and student gifts were generously sponsored by Crescent Electrical Supply Co., Ideal Industries, and Milwaukee Tool.
Most IECRM students work full-time as electrician’s apprentices and participate in the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship (OA/BAT) program, which allows them to grow their salaries to commensurate with the growth of their skills during their education. Upon completion of the education program, IECRM graduates have gained the required experience to qualify for mid-level positions which includes higher pay rates and better benefits.
“Fellow graduates, look at everything we have accomplished. Four years of classes and four or more years of job related experience improving our craft and knowledge in the electrical field,” said Kevin McEntee, during his Salutatorian speech. “As most of us have either already taken our Journeyman’s license, or are about to take it, remember to pay it forward and teach the new apprentices to keep this field safe and knowledgeable. With that being said, congratulations to all of you and I wish you the best of luck.”
The Keynote Speaker at the graduation ceremony was Paul Bledsoe of Legrand, an industry veteran of 38 years. “In my job, I see lots of apprenticeship and continuing education programs in place all around the country. IECRM has put together such a great vocational education program that it has become the envy of those around the country,” said Bledsoe.
During the ceremony, several graduates and underclassmen were awarded for achieving high academic honors, perfect attendance, competing in the 2015 IECRM Wire-Off Competition, skills challenges, and other achievements. Every graduate received a 10-piece Ideal Industries toolkit and a drill kit and tape measure from Milwaukee Tool.