The Town of Clayton Electric Department is partnering with the NCWorks NextGen Program to provide apprenticeship opportunities to eligible youth who are interested in pursuing a career in the electric field.
The program focuses on providing young people between the ages of 16 and 24 with hands-on experiences, relevant training, and opportunities to build professional relationships that will help them to start a career path with a promising future.
Tanner Wroughton, a Johnston County native, was selected to serve as Clayton Public Power’s summer apprentice. His previous manual labor experience in septic tank installation and construction made him a strong candidate for the apprenticeship.
“I had heard about the benefits of the NextGen Program and how rewarding a career as a lineman can be,” said Wroughton. “My uncle and many of my friends are linemen, and they all encouraged me to pursue this opportunity.”
Wroughton began his apprenticeship in July and completed his training with Clayton Public Power on Sept. 22.
As a Clayton Public Power apprentice, Wroughton learned how to operate the equipment necessary to perform linework tasks and gained the ability to identify working hazards and related safety precautions involved in powerline work. He was also taught how to properly lay groundwork and use hand tools efficiently.
According to Town of Clayton Electric Director Allen Turnage, Wroughton’s training and experiences in the field allowed him to gain an understanding of electrical principles, functions, and how Clayton Public Power operates.
“I think the apprenticeship is a great starting point. It gives young people an opportunity to see if they are truly interested in linework. They are around staff, other linemen, on the jobsite, and interacting with the public,” said Turnage. “The experience also helps them discover if this is a career path they want to pursue.”
According to Wroughton, he thoroughly enjoyed working in Clayton and the opportunity to learn from experienced lineman.
“I love Clayton. I was familiar with the area and know a few people who live here. When I found out I was selected to work here, I was excited,” said Wroughton. “Working with this crew has allowed me to make professional connections and establish some roots.”
Wroughton added that his time as an apprentice helped him determine a career path. He plans to get his lineman certification and pursue a career in the electric industry.
To learn more about the NCWorks NextGen Program, visit capitalareancworks.com.