Career Information

Sample Career Pathway

CONSTRUCTION TECHNOLOGY CAREER INFORMATION

Employment of carpenters is expected to increase by 13 percent during the 2008–18 decade, as fast as the average for all occupations. The residential light carpentry emphasis can prepare you for a variety of occupation.

In May 2008, median hourly wages of wage and salary carpenters were $18.72. The middle 50 percent earned between $14.42 and $25.37. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $11.66, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $33.34. Median hourly wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of carpenters were as follows:

  • Nonresidential building construction $21.08
  • Building finishing contractors $19.37
  • Residential building construction $18.24
  • Foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors $17.67
  • Employment services $15.81

Earnings can be reduced on occasion because carpenters lose work time in bad weather and during recessions when jobs are unavailable. Earnings may be increased by overtime during busy periods. Some carpenters are members of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America. About 19 percent of all carpenters were members of unions or covered by union contracts, higher than the average for all occupations.

HVAC CAREER INFORMATION

Employment of sheet metal workers is expected to increase by 6 percent between 2008 and 2018, slower than the average for all occupations. The HVAC emphasis can prepare you for a variety of occupations.

In May 2008, median hourly wages of sheet metal workers were $19.37. The middle 50 percent earned between $14.39 and $27.03. The lowest 10 percent of all sheet metal workers earned less than $11.43, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $35.36. The median hourly wages of the largest industries employing sheet metal workers were as follows:

  • Federal Government $23.37
  • Building finishing contractors $21.35
  • Building equipment contractors $19.98
  • Foundation, structure, and building exterior contractors $17.67
  • Architectural and structural metals manufacturing $17.32

Apprentices normally start at about 40 to 50 percent of the rate paid to experienced workers. As apprentices acquire more skills, they receive periodic pay increases, until their pay approaches that of experienced workers. About 32 percent of all sheet metal workers belong to a union. Union workers in some areas receive supplemental wages from the union when they are laid off or experience shortened workweeks.

ELECTRICAL CAREER INFORMATION

Employment of electricians should increase 12 percent between 2008 and 2018, about as fast as the average for all occupations. The electrical emphasis can prepare you for a variety of occupations

In May 2008, median hourly wages of wage and salary electricians were $22.32. The middle 50 percent earned between $17.00 and $29.88. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $13.54, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $38.18. Median hourly wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of electricians were as follows:

  • Electric power generation, transmission and distribution $28.15
  • Local government $25.66
  • Nonresidential building construction $ 22.21
  • Building equipment contractors $21.72
  • Employment services $18.32

Apprentices usually start at between 30 and 50 percent of the rate paid to fully trained electricians, depending on experience. As apprentices become more skilled, they receive periodic pay increases throughout their training.

About 32 percent of all electricians are members of a union, especially the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Among unions representing maintenance electricians are the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; the International Union of Electronic, Electrical, Salaried, Machine, and Furniture Workers; the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers; the International Union, United Automobile, Aircraft and Agricultural Implement Workers of America; and the United Steelworkers of America.

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