When Scott Shoemaker hawks the job of electrical lineman, he speaks from experience.
For 35 years, he made a living keeping the lights on for Santee Cooper customers. Now he’s helping Horry-Georgetown Technical College launch a program that prepares local workers for the wave of job opportunities coming to power companies.
Shoemaker, who recently retired as an area operations supervisor at Santee Cooper, said the state-owned utility is beginning to see many older workers retire from the industry. That’s opening the door for new hires, yet the closest training facility has been Trident Technical College in North Charleston.
But starting this month, HGTC is offering a three-month class that teaches all the basics of the electrical lineman’s job. The college recently put the finishing touches on a Conway training course that features 16 power poles, transformers, conductors and rows of wires.