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Meet Valedictorian Austin Weaver and Salutatorian Landon Doty of the WECA Utah Class of 2024

Thursday, June 27, 2024

Stay tuned for a special publication featuring the first-ever WECA Utah Commercial Electrical Apprenticeship graduating class! We celebrated their graduation last weekend, and have pictures and video coming your way soon. In the meantime, meet our valedictorian and salutatorian!


WECA is proud to present the inaugural Utah Commercial Electrical Apprenticeship Program Class of 2024 – including its Valedictorian, Austin Weaver, an employee of WECA Member Contractor Helix Electric.

Austin reports that his WECA education was “a nice blend of being challenging, engaging, and interesting. Between the presentations of need-to-know information and the labs, I felt my confidence grow in what I could expect in the field and in myself. The two-week class format was something I really enjoyed because I felt that I could focus on my learning without the exhausting demands of a full workweek.”

Additionally, Austin says that his apprenticeship with WECA has prepared him for his career by exposing him to the resources needed to be a successful electrician and teaching him how to navigate those resources.

“Much of the knowledge I’ve learned has contributed to a broader intuition that will surely help me in the many critical thinking situations I will be faced with in the future. My education will also help me connect with the upcoming generation of electricians that go through the program and enable me to help them with questions they have by using on-the-job situations as teaching points. Frankly, it will also help me be a better mentor and provide an effective bridge between school and work,” says Austin.

As a complement to his WECA education, Austin’s on-the-job training with employer Helix Electric made him adaptable and laid the groundwork for his work processes. Austin’s on-the-job training also allowed him to learn from his successes and failures, as well as those of others.

Austin credits his success at WECA to WECA’s curriculum, his determined and focused spirit, and his support system.

“Some of the factors that contributed to my success at WECA, in my career, and in becoming valedictorian of my class include the profoundly well-thought-out curriculum that WECA offers, my willingness to learn from the many electricians I’ve been able to work with, and my determination to aspire to and accomplish lofty academic goals,” says Austin. “My success is due to the support of others. I’ve been blessed to work around people who actively help me to become better. I intend to pay that forward.”

Austin encourages current and future apprentices to “be humble – if you’re struggling with something in school or at work, look at it as an opportunity to grow instead of a stab at your pride. Struggles expose us for who we currently are so we can tend to weaknesses and become all the better. Another bit of advice is to really take your class time at WECA seriously. If you learn as much as you possibly can in the classroom and couple that with your hands-on abilities from the field, you will be an effective and confident electrician who will be trusted.”

Furthermore, Austin credits his mentors, instructor, and family for helping propel his success.

“I would like to give a shout-out to Jon Hunt for inviting me to apply at Helix and join the electrical trade. I will forever be indebted to him,” says Austin. “I’d like to thank Ryan Harwood, Joaquin Gomez, and Derek Ferguson for mentoring me throughout my career so far. I’d like to thank Talon Pobuda (WECA Utah Apprenticeship Manager and Lead Instructor) for his excellent teaching and keen interest in our success as skilled workers. And I’d like to thank my parents, siblings, and extended family for their love and support as I’ve progressed along my career path.”

After graduating from WECA, Austin plans to further his electrical industry education, finesse his performance and leadership skills, and “become an invaluable asset to Helix Electric and continue to provide my best work for them.”

Congratulations on your graduation, Austin! Your humility, drive, and grit have paid off – and will continue to take you far. The Utah electrical industry is lucky to have you!



If there’s one thing that WECA Utah Class of 2024 Salutatorian and Hunt Electric Commercial Electrical Apprentice Landon Doty could change about his apprenticeship experience, it would have been to start in the WECA program through Day 1.

“Having gone to other schools first, I can confidently say that I would love to have started from the beginning with WECA,” says Landon. “We discussed some of the curriculum that my class didn’t get to cover elsewhere, and some of the material that we did get to cover at WECA…I can only imagine how much better it would be to have gone through WECA sooner.”

“WECA is fun. Having many more labs than previous schools was a treat. WECA also gave me access to many concepts, products, and scenarios that I had never seen until it was required of me. I can now more confidently approach numerous uncommon tasks. I have spent many hours being moved around with tasks and learning new ways of approaching tasks. Learning to install is important, but having the chance to learn how to learn has been greatly beneficial,” continues Landon.

Outside of the classroom, Landon is tremendously thankful for his on-the-job apprenticeship experience with employer and WECA Utah founding Member Contractor Hunt Electric.

“I am lucky enough to have the opportunity through Hunt to work on a one-of-a-kind project. I look forward to being able to see such an incredible project through,” says Landon. “It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime project that I am blessed to be a part of. I look forward to learning more and improving further. As wonderful as it is to finish school, I still can’t help but feel that I have so much more to learn.”

Landon also attributes his success to being focused and detail oriented.

“I have always been more of a meticulous person,” says Landon. “I like to understand the ‘why’ just as much as the ‘how’. This has helped me be able to prioritize tasks, and information needed for a task. Being able to differentiate is great for using time and energy efficiently.”

And last, but not least, Landon credits his mom and dad with contributing to his success.

“Their continuous support has been nothing short of a miracle and a blessing,” says Landon.