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Electrical Workers Local 86/IBM

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We put in a new uninterrupted power supply system
For a whole data board.
It’s hard to believe that you can shut off the AC power
And they invert the DC to AC
And never miss a cycle out on our beat —
Like never missing a heart beat
Out on the computer room floor.

We have three journeymen and one apprentice.
That’s the ratio that we like to maintain.
So he is not working by himself.
I know what it’s like to my helpers,
An additional helper on the high voltage jobs,
On the control jobs,
So they’ll learn a little bit about it.
You can’t never put them there. What’s going to happen?
You’re going to have old guys retire and no one to take over.
So it is important that they’re on the more technical jobs.

A young electrician, an apprentice electrician,
Doesn’t go to school at night and work as an
    electrician all day.
He goes to school at night and works with an
    electrician all day.
There’s a very big difference.
Someone that’s been in the business for three years
Really knows a lot about the business.
He still has to work with someone
Who’s been in the business for fifteen years.
And that’s where they get much of the training.

You’ve got to want to do this first,
Like anything else.
You’ve got to want to be in the construction business.
Builders work with their hands.
You go through a five-year apprenticeship program.
You would get trained under a mechanic, working with him.
You’d go to school two nights a week,
Three hours a night for five years.
And they have on the job training, too, as an apprentice.
Once they’ve completed the five years of study
With satisfactory marks, they become a journeyman.
The Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee
Lays out the curriculum for the courses.
And it has everything to do with code, job information,
Blueprint reading, programmable controls,
Standard motor controls, first aid, theory.
Fiber optics is the newest thing
And that is being added to our courses.