Meet Your Coop: Apprentices to Journeymen Linemen
Monthly tests, way too much bookwork and 8,000 hours of training later, SLV REC employees Jordan Barbosa and Jed Larsen are now officially journeymen linemen.
Following a three-week stint at Adams State and a ride-along with current SLVREC foreman Ryan Christensen, Barbosa made the transition to line school at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction in 2011.
Larsen’s plans were a little more clear cut; knowing he wanted to be a lineman to make good money, he attended the Line Technician Program at Trinidad State from 2009-10.
Following the completion of lineman school, Barbosa and Larsen joined the REC team as apprentices, studying on their own time for their monthly tests that would lead to their journeyman lineman certifications.
In August their hard work and dedication paid off as they both passed the final exam to journey out. Finishing the program and becoming actual journeymen has many benefits, including an increase in pay, the ability to go out on call by yourself, and probably the best part for these two— the end of bookwork.
The duties of a lineman are not easy. They construct and maintain electrical power systems. A journeyman lineman performs a variety of jobs: engineer, project manager, equipment operator, mechanic and more.
Barbosa’s favorite part is pulling in the wire and troubleshooting. Larsen also favors troubleshooting; “you get to think a lot more; there’s satisfaction in figuring it out.”
Barbosa and Larsen both agree that anyone looking to become a lineman should “come check it out first. Make sure that’s what you want to do. Many people go to school then never work. It’s a competitive field and can be hard to get an apprenticeship.”
Linemen are the first responders of the electric cooperative, and they’re always ready to get the job done, day or night. Whether they’re restoring power after a major storm or maintaining critical infrastructure to the electric system, these men are at the heart of everything REC does.
Congratulations to Jordan and Jed— the REC is proud of you!