The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA), their national training arm the electrical training ALLIANCE (etA), and sole program sponsor Milwaukee Tool are proud to announce that Raul Gutierrez has graduated from the Veterans Electrical Entry Program (VEEP) pre-apprenticeship training and is entering into an apprenticeship with the LU112-NECA electrical apprenticeship in Kennewick, Washington. Mr. Gutierrez is the first graduate of this program to arrive in the Tri-Cities and the first in the nation to complete the VEEP Computer Mediated Learning curriculum.
The Veteran’s Electrical Entry Program is designed by the electrical training ALLIANCE to fill two needs the United States is currently facing. The first is providing transitioning service members, spouses, and recently separated veterans the ability to reenter the civilian workforce in a high demand field that offers excellent earning potential. This helps VEEP meet the second need, providing high quality electricians to an industry facing a major shortage of skilled labor.
VEEP understands that the transition to civilian life can be stressful. To help alleviate that, the program is provided at no cost to the participant or the U.S. military and can be done while transitioning out of the military. Prior to attending VEEP, participants decide where in the United States they would like to live and work after completion of the program. The electrical training ALLIANCE then facilitates an agreement for direct entry of the candidate into the training center (JATC) that has jurisdiction in that location. Once an agreement has been made, the participant is approved to attend VEEP.
The first, pilot training of this program was completed in Anchorage, Alaska in April of 2019. Additional training offerings were completed there in February of 2020 and October of 2020. Initially, this pre-apprenticeship was presented entirely with an in-person training model. Participation by active duty personnel requires approval via the service members’ chain of command and, once enrolled, training is in lieu of daily duty requirements while still on active duty. The training must typically be started within the final 180 days of service, to take advantage of this aspect, and individual approvals must be obtained. Beginning in the second quarter of 2020, VEEP began supporting service members and veterans with an online, computer mediated training curriculum. This enables participation by those unable, for various reasons, to make the trip to in person offerings at the necessary time. Raul Gutierrez is the first nationally to complete this computer mediated learning enabled pre-apprenticeship.