Chapter Corner

Newsroom & Insights: July 2013

Code Q&A - July 2013

What is equipotential bonding for permanently installed pools?

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Confined Spaces

The electrical trade presents many hazards to the electrical contractor who must at times work on energized equipment, on roofs, or on busy job sites. Being lowered down into vault or walking into some other confined space where work must be performed adds yet another dynamic to the job and other existing hazards that requires special skills. Confined spaces are challenging on many fronts. Let's walk through some things you may want to consider and review available tools that can help in the preparation for work in confined spaces. Identifying and labeling confined spaces, instituting and maintaining onsite emergency response plans, and providing training for workers and supervisors can save lives. Let's explore more on this topic together.

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Use Non-Traditional Sources for Developing Your Labor Force

Much has been written about the potential shortage of skilled electricians, HVAC technicians, and plumbers. How did this happen? It is not like the service trades have not been doing their best to build a system that will turn out skilled employees; a visit to any IEC chapter will illustrate this statement. There you will find quality training programs in place, the latest equipment for training and a knowledgeable staff to support the apprentice throughout the program.

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IEC & 4H: Encouraging the Next Generation of Electrical Contractors

If you attended the 56th Annual IEC National Convention & Electric Expo in Fort Worth, Texas last October, you may have noticed some young faces in the exhibit hall on Friday morning. Perhaps you saw people with stickers that had a four-leaf clover on them; those future leaders were the 4-H’ers attending the Electrical Industry Career Exploration Day!

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The Unprecedented Feat of Perfection

One of the rare achievements in life is perfection. When people claim that something is perfect, there are typically flaws that have gone unnoticed. Furthermore, when perfection is accomplished, it is commonly over a very brief period of time. Steven Nemeth, a 2013 graduate of the Mid-South IEC and employee of Davis Electric in Memphis, Tennessee, debunks this conventional wisdom, by getting 100 percent in the Apprentice Program. Not only did he accomplish perfection, but he did it over four years.

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Pathway to Finding Women to Become Workers in the Electrical Industry

How do you spark an interest in an electrical career to your audience? An effective presentation is a dynamic presentation that involves the audience. To quote William Glasser’s How We Learn Theory, individuals learn “20 percent of what they hear, 30 percent of what they see, 50 percent of what we see and hear, 70 percent of what we discuss, 80 percent of what we experience and 95 percent of what we teach others.” Out goes the lecture style of a presentation and in we bring the hands-on demonstration. Engage your audience in wiring a simple circuit so that they can flip a switch and turn the light on, to making a fluorescent light bulb glow while in the presence of the electromagnetic field of a plasma ball. No matter what the project is, make sure your audience is experiencing aspects within an electrical career (and while they are doing it, they are having fun).

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How Your Image Impacts Your Bottom Line

Let’s set the scene: you have to pick a restaurant for a nice evening to celebrate. You want it to fit the celebration so it needs tablecloths, perfectly elegant lighting, subdued music and a charming but understated wait staff that serves freshly-prepared unique dishes. It has to be special.

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Career Exposure

So often, young children are asked the perplexing question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” The popular answers are police officer, doctor, astronaut, or another career that has a “hero” factor. When I was eight, nobody could have convinced me that I was not going to be the first cross-sport baseball and basketball star; I did not even know that the public relations field was a career choice.

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Combating the Labor Shortage

As summer begins, so does the bulk of the workload for the majority of construction companies. Along with the many projects that run throughout the year, schools are racing to complete projects in a matter of months. In the housing market, low interest rates and consumer confidence have boosted the new home sales in many areas across the country creating a strong comeback, so finding additional skilled manpower has become the challenge many of us are already facing.

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