How to Start Apprenticeship Training


 Apprenticeship Training

Apprenticeship Training combines paid on-the-job work-based training with block release technical training in a classroom setting, in which, registered Apprentices learn the practical and theoretical aspects of the Powerline trade occupation.  Successful completion of both components along with other program requirements and examinations are required to earn certification and become a certified Red Seal Powerline Technician. 

 How to Become a Registered JLATA Apprentice

Employment is the First Step to Apprenticeship Training

Employers are looking for individuals that have the right attitude, a keen interest in the trade and possess an appropriate level of practical skills for entry into the Powerline Technician apprenticeship program.

Skills and Attributes for the Trade

Individuals must be in good health and should have the following skills and attributes to be successful in the trade:

  • Meet challenges of physically demanding work in all types of weather
  • Strength and stamina (upper body strength)
  • A mechanical aptitude (familiarity with industrial tools & equipment) 
  • Physical dexterity
  • Comfortable working at heights and confined spaces 
  • Good hearing and color vision 
  • Good Hand-eye coordination 
  • Precise and detailed in work 
  • Ability to read and interpret blueprints 
  • Be able to work as a member of a team 
  • Ability to relocate and adapt to change

Working Conditions

Powerline Technician Apprentices are required to work outdoors and travel to various worksites and may be called upon at any hour and in all weather conditions. The work may be strenuous and requires climbing poles or towers, carrying, reaching, and frequent heavy lifting, and operating vehicles.

Finding an Employer

In order to become an Apprentice, you will need to get hired as a Trades Trainee with one of our Employer members who will train and enroll you into the apprenticeship program. Once you are employed a Powerline Contractor will hire you as a Trades Trainee.


  • Research potential Employers that might be the right fit for you.
  • Visit workplaces in person with a resume on hand and ask if they are hiring. Oftentimes, going in person can lead to more opportunities than applying online.
  • Check with the Local 258 IBEW about employment opportunities.



Math, reading and document use (i.e. charts, schematics, etc.) are essential skills. Apprentices with strong skills in these areas are eight times more likely to pass their exams. They’re also less likely to hurt themselves or others on the job.

Take the free assessment to find out if a trade is a good fit for you or learn of opportunities to improve your skillset for successful trades training. Enter site here

Registering as a Trades Trainee with the JLATA and Local 258 IBEW

Individuals hired for a Trades Trainees (TT) position must be registered with JLATA and Local 258 IBEW.  A Trades Trainees  is an entry-level position that is intended to provide:

  • Job and crew support
  • Supervised exposure to the Powerline Technician trade, and
  • Knowledge and basic job skills for entry into the apprenticeship program

This is a minimum of 6-12 months probationary training period. During this period the Trades Trainee is given an opportunity to complete the program prerequisites and to acquire a sufficient level of understanding and practical application of job skills to make an informed decision on whether to pursue the trade; and for the Employer to evaluate the Trades Trainees practical skills to determine whether the Trades Trainee has the attributes to be successful in the apprenticeship program.

Trades Trainee Scope of Work

All Trades Trainees must be under the direct supervision of the journeyman PLT and shall be provided with enough instruction to ensure his/her safety. UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL THE TRADES TRAINEE BE ALLOWED TO COME INTO CONTACT WITH LOW OR HIGH VOLTAGE.

Under the direction of a qualified Journeyman or Sub-Foreman, a Trades Trainee may:

  • Use hand tools
  • identify materials
  • Work as a ground person & material handler
  • Dig pole holes, anchors, etc.
  • Perform labour-type work in pole setting and URD
  • Operate bucket and boom trucks
  • Climb
  • Install and pull on cold construction
  • Frame poles on the ground
  • Clean up 

Apprenticeship Program Prerequisites 

Trades Trainees are required to complete the academic and practical prerequisites listed below to be eligible for entry into the apprenticeship program.


  • High School Diploma or a government recognized high school equivalency certificate.
  • Pre-Calculus 11 or higher
  • Physics 11 or higher
  • English 12
  • Electric Utility Fundamentals (CNC online course)


  • Class 3 driver’s license with Air Brake Endorsement
  • Registered as a Trades Trainee with the JLATA and Local 258 IBEW for a minimum of 6 months


  • Minimum of 6-12 months supervised work experience with current Employer and recorded in the Trades Trainee Log Book.
  • Practical skills evaluated and verified by Employer through a series of Field Progress Assessments


The Electric Utility Fundamentals online course is offered through the College of New Caledonia introduces and Trades Trainees to basic concepts required to understand and explain the systems that generate, deliver and sell electrical power.


Click here for additional information and to register online

Apprenticeship Eligibility and Selection

Your Employer evaluates your practical skills and recommends you to the JLATA for Indentureship into the apprenticeship program.

The work of Powerline Technicians can be very dangerous. There are severe risks of working around high energy sources, mature judgement is required, and there are other dangers too, such as working at heights. For these reasons, the candidate for this apprenticeship program must be assessed very carefully. Trades Trainees’ behavior is evaluated carefully by qualified trained Powerline Technician journeymen for a period of 6 – 12 months before they can be considered for an apprenticeship.

Through careful observation and evaluation, your Employer will determine your readiness for entry into the apprenticeship program and submit an application for Indentureship to the JLATA office.  Employers select candidates from their existing registered Trades trainees.

Applicants that meet the program prerequisites will have their names brought forward to the JLATA Board for consideration of indentureship into the Apprenticeship Program.

Waitlists: Due to the limited size of the Powerline Construction industry, no more than 15 Trades Trainees will be indentured into the apprenticeship program per year. Trades Trainees will be placed on a waitlist and processed in order of date received, provided all program requirements are met. 

Overview of Trades Trainee Training Process

Cycle 1:  From Selection as a Trades Trainee to Completion of Initial Requirements for Apprenticeship.

(click to view image) 




Indentureship into Apprenticeship Program


Work Based Training


Complete Technical Training


Recommended for Certification


Credentials Awarded

View Pathway

Learn more on the pathway to certification

Powering BC Through Excellence in Training

The Joint Line Apprenticeship Training Association has the managerial oversight for the program to assure Apprentices in the Powerline Technician Apprenticeship Program are provided the best training and learning experience within the trade.