Jharden Davis grew up in a small Northland town, where most people he knew got a job at the local meatworks. But with dreams of being a qualified tradie, he moved to Tāmaki Makaurau to train. We caught up with this electrical apprentice to find out what he enjoys about his trade.
A career in electrical
As an electrician, you’ll install, maintain and repair electrical systems and equipment. This career is great for practical people and problem solvers. Good electricians enjoy active, hands-on work, are accurate and safety-conscious, and can communicate well.
“Electrical is a really good trade. It gives you a lot of job opportunities, worldwide. You can travel with your New Zealand ticket and it’s still valid. So put in the work, especially the bookwork, that’s most important. And yeah – sparkies make a lot of dollars.”
Jharden Davis, electrical apprentice
How do I train?
Trades training is flexible. You can:
- Do a pre-trades programme, then get a job and apprenticeship
- Get an apprenticeship straight away and study while you work
Many people start with a pre-trades programme at a training institution. This will give you the hands-on experience and theory you need to prepare you for work. If you qualify for one of our scholarships, you can study for free – and we’ll help you find work when you finish.
If you already have experience in the trades or are ready for working life and happy to study while you work, you might look at going straight into an apprenticeship. We can help you make that decision, and we might even know someone who needs an apprentice like you.
“The work is awesome. There’s heaps to learn, I get to do different things every day, and it’s hands-on, practical work. I knew I didn’t want a desk job – not right now anyway. I’m an active, hands-on person, so I based my career around that.”
How do I fund my training?
There are a few ways to get your fees paid – but they’re not all the same.
Only available to Māori and Pasifika learners, the MPTT scholarship doesn’t just cover your course fees, it gives you the most well-rounded support to get a job in the trades.
Find out how the MPTT scholarship compares to other funding options.
Find a course
You can apply for the MPTT scholarship programme now, but make sure you enrol in your chosen course as well. Here’s what you need to do:
- Check out the courses for electrical below, and follow the links to find out more. Once you’ve chosen your course, you’ll need to apply for it through the course provider (e.g. MIT, Unitec or NZMA).
- Apply for your MPTT scholarship and, if you qualify, we’ll let your chosen course provider know you’ve been awarded an MPTT scholarship to get financial help and other support.
Find out which electrical course is right for you using the links below.
Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT)
- New Zealand Certificate in Electrical Engineering (Level 3)
- New Zealand Certificate in Electrical Pre-Trade (Level 3)
Find an apprenticeship
Apprenticeships are managed by Industry Training Organisations (ITOs), who make sure you get the training you need to earn your qualification. The ITO for electrical is the Skills Organisation. T
Alternatively, you can do a ‘managed apprenticeship’ through Etco (The Electrical Training Company). This means that, instead of being employed by an electrician directly, you’ll be employed as an apprentice by Etco, who will find a place for you to work (called a host company).