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Apprentice Lineman Requirements

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The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) is a strong union that provides good pay and benefits for people in the electrical field across the country. Certain requirements must be met to join the IBEW. You won't be the only one competing for a spot, so make sure you do everything correctly.


Depending on the local union you wish to join, you may have only one day out of the entire year to apply. You must be on time and have the proper documentation. If you have to be at the union hall at 10 a.m., then arrive at 7 a.m. It's not uncommon for 1,500 people to show up to apply for 35 open positions.


You must be 17 years of age or older, prove that you have a high school diploma and have completed at least one year of Algebra. In addition, some union halls won't even accept your application unless you can show at least one year of English. You must also provide proof of residency and have a valid state-issued driver's license.


After successfully completing an application, you'll receive a date and time for your subsequent testing. Sometimes you'll get your testing date when you apply; otherwise it will be mailed to you. The tests consist of mathematics, reading and comprehension. Again, you should arrive hours early to take these tests. Depending on your scores, you will be contacted with an interview date or a rejection letter.


A board of people will ask you questions. You can't really prepare for the interview.

Waiting Game

If you are accepted into the union, you will be given a number and a score percentile. Start checking the job board regularly. The highest scores will be taken first as jobs open. You have two years to be accepted into a position. Then you're a permanent union member.

Drug Test

Most companies that will hire you will require a drug test.


Rebecca Burdick began her freelance writing career in 2007 and currently writes for several online publications. She specializes in small business bookkeeping and financial management. Burdick studied accounting and economics at Boise State University and University of California at Riverside.

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