As the market for electrical contracting services expands in diverse directions, finding capable managers to oversee current projects and plan for future growth is becoming a challenge for many contractors. NECA is addressing the potential managerial shortfall in our industry through a variety of ongoing activities, including establishing student organizations at colleges and universities to encourage young people to consider careers in electrical contracting.
Therefore, we are pleased to welcome our newest NECA Student Chapter at Alfred State College in Alfred, New York. There are now 26 NECA Student Chapters operating across the country, and we anticipate adding more in the near future.
The new organization at Alfred State College (ASC) is sponsored by the Rochester New York Chapter, NECA. This chapter is now affiliated with two NECA Student Chapters, having brought Rochester Institute of Technology into the program earlier this year.
A component of ELECTRI International’s Talent Initiative, the NECA Student Chapter program consists of student-run chapters that are supported by NECA chapters and university faculty. Developing future managers through activities involving the best and brightest students is especially important because managerial and administrative personnel in EC firms must not only understand the business but also be able to work effectively in teams, solve complex problems, and communicate clearly. It behooves us to inspire smart, capable young people to join us — before some other industry snatches them away!
At the national level, NECA and ELECTRI International support NECA Student Chapters in a variety of ways, including presenting the annual Green Energy Challenge student competition and holding a NECA Student Chapter Summit in conjunction with our annual Convention. NECA chapters that sponsor student chapters expose the students to industry-related educational programs, such as those offered by NECA’s Management Education Institute; help arrange internships with local NECA-member contractors and field trips to NECA contractors’ offices and work sites; and provide guidance with respect to special student projects.
More information about NECA Student Chapters, including guidance on how to establish one, is available at www.necanet.org/education/student-chapters/
About Alfred State College
NECA’s student chapter program is open to any college or university that offers a curriculum which helps prepare students for a career in the electrical construction industry. One of the State University of New York (SUNY) system’s premier colleges of technology, ASC, with its motto of “Hit the Ground Running,” prepares students for careers in many ways.
It offers 52 associate-level programs, including more than a dozen in applied and engineering technologies, and 19 baccalaureate degree programs. The School of Applied Technology on ASC’s Wellsville campus offers an associate degree in occupational studies (AOS), including “Electrical Construction and Maintenance Electrician,” as well as certificate programs. (The ASC NECA Student Chapter’s faculty advisor, Stephen P. Kielar, is an instructor for the electrical trades and also teaches in the college’s Computer Networking Department.)
Project-based learning is a cornerstone of Alfred State culture. Many of its programs lead to internships with area companies. ASC also offers job placement services and very active academic advising and counseling. In its most recent placement survey, 99% of ASC graduates either found jobs or went on to pursue four-year degrees. And, 94% of those students who entered the workforce got jobs in their chosen field. Being well-prepared and work-ready gives ASC students a significant head start on life and in their professional careers.
Sports fans might also be interested in knowing that ASC is the home of the Pioneers.