The Electrical Connection applies a holistic approach to workforce development that invests not only in the award-winning IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center, but also in journey worker and apprentice career development.
In addition, it invests in critical programs to improve elementary and secondary education, including robotics, education in all forms of energy and other subjects related to the electrical/communications industry. All of this is done at no taxpayer expense. The Electrical Connection partners with a number of education organizations including:
In 2017, the Electrical Connection launched an education partnership with St. Louis Community College (SLCC) to further IBEW career development. The partnership allows apprentices and journey workers to earn associate degrees from SLCC.
The Electrical Connection is also particularly active in the area of STEM education where it can provide compelling examples of how science, technology, engineering and math skills are used in the electrical and communications industry. The Electrical Connection has engaged more than 10,000 students in how STEM subjects translate into electrical careers. It also participates in more than 20 career fairs annually at high schools throughout the area.
In 2017, the Electrical Connection committed $500,000 to a STEM education partnership with the Saint Louis Science Center. The investment helps the Science Center reach more students with its creative STEM programs. The Electrical Connection has also been major supporter of FIRST Robotics and the St. Charles Economic Development Center’s salute to STEM achievers. By investing in STEM education programs, the Electrical Connection broadens opportunities for applicants to meet the academic requirements to become apprentices in the training center program.
Finally, the Electrical Connection broadens opportunities in the electrical and communications trades with the above mentioned outreach and by engaging with National Society of Black Engineers, St. Louis Gateway Chapter; American Association of Blacks in Energy, St. Louis Chapter; Project Lead the Way (Jennings School District) and more. Its members not only mentor apprentices, but also emerging minority contracting firms through its support of the Regional Union Construction Center (RUCC).