'Women in Linework' examined at LCC - The Lookout - LCC's Independent Student Newspaper Since 1959
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'Women in Linework' examined at LCC

Lineworker art

Utility linework is a male-dominated field, but LCC took steps to try to change that with a seminar called "Women in Linework" Oct. 19 at LCC's west campus.  Photo from Clipart Library

Juanita Kelly-Hill

By Juanita Kelly-Hill
Staff Writer

Over 20 people participated in a “Women in Utility Linework” event Wednesday, Oct. 19 at LCC’s west campus.

The event was dedicated to informing young women on career options in which they are underrepresented. 

Women make-up only 2 percent of the electrical, energy/utilities and linework industries, according to Linework Academy Coordinator Becky Sutton.

The linework staff at LCC is working toward bridging the gap of the men-to-women ratio in the field. 

“Intentional programming and recruiting will at least start to help close the gap,” Sutton explained. “The main difference will be when young girls actually see more women in the trades and, especially, climbing the utility poles.

 “Collaborating with other training programs and industry leaders, such as Consumers Energy and DTE, will also help so much.” 

Women are most underrepresented in the field due to the stereotypes of both women and men, according to information shared at the seminar.

Women are assumed to take roles in “feminine” based careers such as nurses, psychologists or teachers, whereas men are looked at to be construction workers, electricians and welders.

The LCC Linework Academy can be completed in 12 months or less, requiring just a total of 35 credits! 

The academy provides a combination of academic and field work training. There is an emphasis on discipline, attention to detail, and physical fitness in the LCC program; all which relate directly to safety.

First-year Linework Apprentices can make an hourly wage that ranges anywhere from $60,000 to $100,000 a year, according to information from LCC, and there is no ceiling on that salary. There are also opportunities for travelling and working storms.

The application process for the Utility Linework Program starts in February and is a separate process in addition to applying to LCC. 

For more information regarding the Utility Linework Program contact Becky Sutton at suttonr4@star.lcc.edu.

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