Western Electrical Contractors Association, Inc.

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Low Voltage Apprenticeship graduates can seek college credits for program completion at WECA!

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

The Details

WECA has a big announcement! Our Low Voltage Electrical Apprenticeship program has received college credit recommendations from NCCRS (the National College Credit Recommendation Service).

This benefit provides WECA low voltage apprentices the ability to gain access to college credit for completion of this three-year apprenticeship program by using the credit recommendation(s) set forth by NCCRS. The Low Voltage Electrical Apprenticeship program joins WECA's Commercial Electrical and Residential Electrical Apprenticeship programs, which each previously received college credit recommendations from NCCRS in 2018.

"We’re gratified to receive this college credit recommendation for our Low Voltage Electrical Apprenticeship program, which now joins our Commercial Electrical and Residential Electrical Apprenticeship Programs in giving our apprenticeship graduates a route towards receiving substantial college credits for the programs they’ve already completed at WECA,” said Terry Seabury, WECA’s Executive Director and CEO. “We appreciate the external validation that our comprehensive, competency-based curriculum featuring skilled teaching by credentialed instructors and technicallyadvanced, hands-on labs is of equivalent rigor to courses held at a traditional four-year college or university.”

"NCCRS is pleased to recommend college credit for WECA’s Low Voltage Electrical Apprenticeship program,” NCCRS Director Lisa Sax Mahoney said. "Through our professional evaluations, we support the recognition of high-quality workforce training programs delivered by qualified organizations across the country."

Founded in 1973 by the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York, the National College Credit Recommendation Service (NCCRS), located in Albany, New York, is an organization that evaluates and establishes college credit recommendations for courses offered by government, industry, and other noncollegiate sponsors.

NCCRS collaborates with more than 1,500 organizations and institutions of higher education across the United States and beyond. NCCRS member organizations include state government agencies, apprenticeship sponsors, corporations, and community and faith-based organizations. A few longstanding members include the City of New York Police Department (NYPD), the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY), and Consolidated Edison. Since its inception, NCCRS has evaluated and recommended college credit for more than 5,200 courses, exams, and educational programs enabling individuals to gain access to college credit for successful completion of qualified learning.
Learn more about NCCRS and view their college credit recommendations for WECA here.

Using This Benefit: A Guide for our Apprentices and Graduates 

Q: Who is eligible?

A: Any graduates of WECA's Low Voltage Apprenticeship program in the Class of 2021, or beyond. (Any graduates of WECA's Commercial or Residential Electrical Apprenticeships since September of 2013 are eligible for those programs. (NCCRS granted eligibility for those programs going back five years, and evaluated WECA's Commercial and Residential programs in Autumn of 2018.)

Q: So WECA apprentice grads automatically have college credits?

A:  No. NCCRS makes college credit recommendations. (From NCCRS:
A college credit recommendation is an academic advisement about the comparability of a learning experience to college-level instruction, such as undergraduate or graduate course work, the amount of credit that may be awarded, and areas where credit could apply. The credit recommendations are intended to guide college officials as they consider awarding credit to persons who have successfully completed NCCRS evaluated learning experiences. College credit recommendations are not actual college credit because the New York State Board of Regents does not award college credit. Through the results of the NCCRS evaluations, however, the Board of Regents encourages colleges and universities to consider accepting the credit recommendations.)

Q: How Does Acceptance of College Credit Recommendations work?

A: It is up to the college or university to choose whether to grant college credits, how many, and in what subjects, for completion of a WECA program. NCCRS recommends specific credit amounts and subjects. College and university admissions departments should reference NCCRS' WECA listing at http://www.nationalccrs.org/organizations/western-electrical-contractors for specific recommendations. NCCRS recommends up to 30 semester credit hours for completion of WECA's Low Voltage Electrical program, up to 66 semester credit hours for completion of WECA's Commerical Electrical program, up to 40 semester credit hours for completion of WECA's Residential Electrical program. 

Q: How Do WECA Commercial, Residential, and Low Voltage Electrical Apprenticeship Graduates Use This Benefit?

A: Apprentices grads should:
1. Identify the college or university they wish to ask to accept a credit recommendation from NCCRS for work completed at WECA. (A list of colleges and universities who have previously participated with NCCRS is here: http://www.nationalccrs.org/colleges-universities. Seeing a college or university on this list is a promising sign that they will consider NCCRS' recommendation, but is not a guarantee. Further, just because a college or university is not yet shown on the list does not mean the apprentice grad shouldn't request that they consider the credit recommendation.)
2. Work with their admissions advisor at their college or university of choice to learn the process for seeking college credits for their WECA Commercial, Residential, or Low Voltage Electrical program completion. The college or university may refer to this as their PLA (prior learning assessment) process or policy. The applicant should share NCCRS' WECA credit recommendation 
http://www.nationalccrs.org/organizations/western-electrical-contractors with the decision-makers at their college or university.
3. Request a transcript from WECA as requested by their college or university. Email apregistrar@goweca.com with transcript requests.
4. If the applicant encounters problems with their transfer credit request, they can contact NCCRS so that NCCRS can advocate on the applicant's behalf.

Q: What about the Electrician Trainee Program?

A: WECA is currently evaluating demand for college credit recommendations for its Electrician Trainee program.

Q: What if I still have questions?

?A: Please call us at 1-877-444-9322 and we'll do our best to help you out.