Vaccine Clinic Appointments: People without internet access may call 360.778.6075.


Electrician - AAS

Choose this program to prepare for an exciting career as an electrician. Students become registered "electrician trainees" with the State of Washington Department of Labor and Industries and are awarded work experience hours upon completion. Occupational choices are extensive in the field; many graduates work in the construction industry, while others work in manufacturing or maintenance.

In BTC’s Electrician program, you’ll learn how to install, maintain, and repair residential, commercial, industrial and renewable electrical systems. You will also learn how to read blueprints and schematics, bend and install conduits, program VFDs and PLCs, and troubleshoot circuits.

To learn more about Bellingham Technical College programs you’re interested in, join us for a Virtual Program Info Session. Prior sign up is required. If you do not see an Info Session for the program you’re interested in, email for more information.

Employment Information

84% BTC graduate placement rate

$44,283 starting annual wage
$62,962 average annual wage
$85,509 potential annual wage
  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    BTC graduate employment rates:
    The graduate employment rate reflects placement rates of students who graduated from BTC in 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17. The Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges Data Linking for Outcomes Assessment database pulls from Unemployment Insurance (UI) data across Washington and Oregon. UI data do not reflect BTC graduates who (a) are employed in states beyond those listed above or outside of the United States, (b) are self-employed, (c) are active duty members of the armed forces, (d) continued on to another educational institution, and/or (e) did not provide a social security number while enrolled at BTC.

    Washington State Employment Security Department 2018 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates ( reflect 2014-2017 employment

    Starting annual wage = 25th percentile
    Average annual wage = 50th percentile
    Potential annual wage = 75th percentile

Estimated Program Costs

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

For the 2021-2022 School Year: We are now accepting new students for winter quarter. This is a first-come, first-served registration. Please contact the Admissions & Advising at 360.752.8345 or if you have questions or concerns.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

Admissions application and assessment testing in Reading, Math and Writing is required. Your score on the test and/or your previous transcripts will determine where you begin your course sequence. Contact Admissions at 360.752.8345 or at for assistance with academic planning.

Pre-Program Course Requirements

Graduates can be credited with up to 1472 supervised work experience hours per RCW 19.28.191 and WAC 296-46b-940. In order to receive the approved experience hours students must have an electrical trainee card from L&I. You will be expected to purchase this trainee card on the first day of the program. Please do not purchase this card prior to your starting date!

Physical Requirements

Electricians deal with color coded wires on a daily basis, making it vital for all electricians to be able to see color.

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 108

  • Quarter 1

  • AMATH 100Applied Occupational Math5 CR
  • ELCN 100Trade & Safety2 CR
  • ELCN 101DC Circuits4 CR
  • ELCN 103Electrical Drawings & Blueprints2 CR
  • ELCN 125Electrical Applied Mechanics4 CR
  • ELCN 131DC Circuit Lab4 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • CMST& 210Interpersonal Communications5 CR
  • ELCN 102AC Circuits3 CR
  • ELCN 112Introduction to National Electrical Code4 CR
  • ELCN 132AC Circuit Lab3 CR
  • ELCN 142Residential Wiring Projects6 CR
  • Quarter 3

  • AENGL 100Applied English5 CR
  • ELCN 104Grounding & Bonding2 CR
  • ELCN 105Transformers, Motors & Generators4 CR
  • ELCN 113Advanced NEC Calculations3 CR
  • ELCN 143Electrical Distribution3 CR
  • ELCN 151Commercial Wiring Methods & Materials5 CR
  • Quarter 4

  • ELCN 201Electronics for Electricians2 CR
  • ELCN 202Machine Control Fundamentals5 CR
  • ELCN 251Commercial & Renewable Energy Projects5 CR
  • ELCN 261Industrial Control Wiring Methods & Materials6 CR
  • ELCN 280Renewable Electrical Sources4 CR
  • Quarter 5

  • ELCN 203PLCs & VFDs5 CR
  • ELCN 214Special Occupancies, Equipment & Conditions3 CR
  • ELCN 262Specialty Industrial Wiring Projects5 CR
  • ELCN 263Automated Control Projects6 CR
  • ELCN 281Electrical Estimating & Design3 CR

Program Outcomes

After successfully completing this program, students will be able to:

  • Ensure safe work practices and installations through compliance with national, state and local regulations and industry standards including the National Electrical Code and WAC/RCW.
  • Design, analyze, and diagnose basic electrical systems through the application of electrical theory fundamentals.
  • Utilize proper tools, materials, and test equipment to construct a variety of code compliant service and branch circuits found in a typical residential setting.
  • Utilize proper tools, materials, and test equipment to construct a variety of code compliant branch and lighting circuits found in a typical commercial setting.
  • Utilize proper tools, materials, and test equipment to construct a variety of code compliant branch, signal, and control circuits found in a typical industrial setting.
  • Summarize the financial and regulatory scope of the electrical industry including government fees, jobsite overhead, business operating expenses, time management, and cost of materials.
  • Communicate clearly and effectively with team members, supervisors, and others in the workplace, using trade terminology, drawings, blueprints, and other documents.
  • Demonstrate professional conduct conducive to the work environment including punctuality, safety, reliability and customer service.
  • Inspect electrical systems, equipment, or components to identify hazards, defects, or the need for adjustment, repair, or updating and to ensure compliance with codes.

Employment Outlook

Employment of electricians is expected to increase faster than the average for all occupations. Job opportunities for skilled electricians are expected to be very good as the growth in demand outpaces the supply of workers trained in this industry. There is expected to be a shortage of skilled workers during the next decade because of the anticipated smaller pool of young workers entering training programs.

About 84% of BTC Electrician students are employed within nine months of graduation. The average annual wage in this field is $62,962, with an earning potential of about $85,805 per year.*

Criminal convictions may restrict or prevent student participation with internships and employment in this industry.

Most program graduates work as electricians. In the United States, more than half of all electricians are employed in the construction industry. Others work as maintenance electricians in virtually every industry including electrical equipment distributors, communications companies, electrical utility companies and industrial manufacturing plants.

Potential positions include apprentice electrician, journeyman electrician, electrical contractor, electrical equipment technician, maintenance electrician, television cable technician, utility company technician, telephone technician and electrical equipment salesperson. Nationally, one out of every ten electricians is self-employed.

Faculty & Support

Photo of Brad Willbrandt
Brad Willbrandt

Photo of William Wells
William Wells