ACTA Partners with Cullman Electric Cooperative to Add Powerline/Fiber Optic Lineman Training Program

CULLMAN Co. Ala. (WBRC) – The Cullman Area Technology Academy (CATA) has partnered with the Cullman Electric Cooperative to add a Power Lineman/Fiber Optic training program to CATA starting in fall 2022.

The program will be open to current high school juniors and will include classroom instruction at CATA and hands-on field training through the Cullman Electric Cooperative.

The training includes an introduction to electrical power and hazards, electrical safety, protective equipment and fiber optics. Students will also have the opportunity to earn credentials including OSHA 10 and Certified Fiber Optic Training (CFOT).

The program gives students the option of taking on-the-job training or a pre-apprenticeship program.

Students will be prepared for a successful career as a powerline worker in a field where the median salary is approximately $65,000 per year.

Cullman Electric Cooperative also created Operation Round Up in 1993 as another way to help schools and impact education.

Students interested in participating in the Lineman program or wanting to learn more about it can contact the Cullman Area Technology Academy or their school counselor or click here. A student/parent information evening will be held on Thursday, May 5 at 5:30 p.m. at the Cullman Area Technology Academy.

Cullman County Schools is currently seeking a part-time instructor for the program.

Equipment for the program will be purchased with a donation from the Cullman Electric Cooperative Board of Directors and a matching grant from the Tennessee Valley Authority.

Tim Culpepper, CEO of Cullman Electric Cooperative, said, “Our community is growing, which means our co-op is growing too. Building and maintaining our electrical infrastructure and the fiber optic cable and broadband equipment that powers Sprout Fiber Internet requires skilled and well-trained men and women. We are thrilled to partner with Cullman County Schools and Cullman Area Technology Academy on this program. It will prepare students for well-paying jobs that are in high demand both locally and nationwide and help meet Cullman Electric’s workforce needs in the future.

Cullman County School Superintendent Dr. Shane Barnette said, “We are excited about this new opportunity for our students. We are constantly on the lookout for exceptional educational experiences that lead to a better future. Cullman Electric Cooperative’s work to bring electricity to our community has revolutionized our society, and the same is happening now with the expansion of fiber internet. This is a perfect opportunity for our students to prepare for a rewarding career in either direction. We already have several students who are interested, and we are grateful to the Cullman Electric Cooperative for their continued partnership.

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Virginia S. Braud