Skylar Grissom's journey through the Western Electrical Contractors Association (WECA) Commercial Electrical Apprenticeship program, in which he achieved the distinction of being awarded Co-Valedictorian of his Southern California graduating class, is a story of determination, family legacy, and a bright future in the electrical industry. For Skylar, the decision to pursue a WECA apprenticeship was influenced by a powerful force: his family. Five of Skylar's older brothers had previously embarked on the same journey through WECA's electrical program, serving as a testament to the program's excellence and career opportunities it provided. This family tradition ignited Skylar's passion and set him on a path to become the sixth brother to become a certified electrician and graduate from WECA apprenticeship.
One of the key decisions Skylar made at WECA was opting for the Commercial Electrical Apprenticeship program. This choice was inspired by the wise counsel of his brothers, who first recognized the immense opportunities in the commercial electrical sector.
Throughout his apprenticeship at WECA, Skylar had the privilege of learning under the guidance of instructor Raymond (Ray) Newton at WECA’s Riverside Apprenticeship Training Facility. Skylar says that Ray's teaching style, emphasizing simplicity and clarity, made complex electrical concepts accessible and understandable for Skylar and his peers.
Skylar's experience at WECA has given him a valuable perspective on the electrical apprenticeship program. His advice to others considering applying to WECA is straightforward: "Just do it, because in the long run, it definitely pays off. It's a little tough at first, but once you get through at least half of (the program), it starts picking up, and it feels really good."
One of the advantages Skylar highlights about the WECA program is the financial freedom it affords its graduates. The fact that there are no tuition fees to pay or student debt to deal with post-graduation has opened doors for Skylar and his brothers. “I knew in high school I couldn't afford college, but once all my brothers were going through WECA, <I learned> you don't have to pay anything. So it really gave us an opportunity.”
Currently, Skylar is employed with WECA Member Contractor Bergelectric, where he has honed his skills for over three years. Skylar's career path exemplifies the opportunities WECA and its members offers to its graduating apprentices, and his post-graduation hopes are to continue working and growing with Bergelectric.
Congratulations on your graduation and joining your older brothers as shining examples of WECA alumni and their excellence in the field, Skylar!