Tuesday, November 24, 2015
BJ Martin, SRHS '14 BSTC '14, thought the electrical program was interesting when he took a tour with his 10th grade high school class and enrolled. In the course of his second year at BSTC, he went on a field trip with Electricity and Cabling II to the Southside Electrical Cooperative to explore lineman work. This led him to research the possibilities and find North American Lineman Training Center. This fall, he is completing the 16-week training there, earning about seven electrical certifications that will allow him to seek a job with a power company. As part of his training, BJ is also receiving training for his Commercial Drivers' License (CDL). He's currently in the top two students in his class.
BJ is not bothered by heights, and his job as a lineman will be thrilling as well as professionally challenging. "I enjoy the climbing. It's kind of a rush climbing up a pole 70 feet with just little spikes on your feet. And getting up there is just half of it," says BJ. He's also learned how to operate a digger derrick for placing electrical poles, hurt person rescue techniques, and how to lift 300-pound transformers with just three people, using systems of pulleys. The program includes field trips to power generation stations and similar sites, too.
Of his training at BSTC, BJ says that he was well-prepared for his work at the lineman training center, understanding basic electrical theory and putting him a step ahead of his classmates. He also credits BSTC's electrical program and teacher Mr. Aaron Payne for helping him learn about his interests--he shares that he wouldn't have known about the lineman career path if it hadn't been for BSTC! Our current Electricity and Cabling II students just took a field trip to Southside Electrical--we look forward to seeing who is inspired this time!