Becoming an Electrician in Tennessee

Someone looking for a job as an electrician in Tennessee will find many employment opportunities throughout the state. Jobs vary based on skill level and specialized training, and typical positions include contractor jobs with the government and residential electrician positions. Electricians will begin gaining experience immediately after deciding to pursue a career in the field, starting with a registered apprenticeship to achieve the required hours to obtain a journeyman license.[En Español]

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Electrician policies and licenses are handled based on the region in Tennessee after obtaining a journeyman license. Residents in the state will follow the guidelines based on Memphis, Knoxville or Nashville’s regulations. Electricians also have the option of getting an education in electrical technology in a few select, post-secondary schools in Tennessee.

Job Outlook and Salaries in Tennessee

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, there were 13,580 electricians employed in the state of Tennessee in 2018. There is an expected employment increase of 12 percent by 2028, adding another 1,830 electrician jobs to the state.

The average annual salary for an electrician in Tennessee was $49,470, according to the most recent BLS report. Due to the licensing and experience-based requirements for advancement in the field, there are plenty of opportunities for electricians to move up in positions. The highest earning electricians in Tennessee received an average annual salary of $73,340 in 2019.

Salaries in Tennessee by Occupation

OccupationTotal EmploymentMean Hourly WageMean Annual WageAnnual Salary 10th PercentileAnnual Salary 25th PercentileAnnual Salary 75th PercentileAnnual Salary 90th Percentile
Electricians12,480$24.25$50,440$32,020$38,460$60,600$73,340
Helpers--Electricians2,790$15.95$33,180$23,250$27,120$37,480$46,210
Electrical and Electronics Installers and Repairers, Transportation Equipment280$28.07$58,380$36,990$43,500$72,090$83,430
Electrical and Electronics Repairers, Commercial and Industrial Equipment1,620$25.06$52,120$33,100$40,760$61,330$75,410
Electrical and Electronics Repairers, Powerhouse, Substation, and Relay560$33.91$70,540$38,030$50,400$87,630$94,340
Electrical Power-Line Installers and Repairers2,240$32.86$68,340$42,590$59,010$79,940$89,880

Electrician Salaries in Tennessee by Region

AreaTotal EmploymentMean Hourly WageMean Annual SalaryHourly Wage 10th PercentileHourly Wage 25th PercentileHourly Wage 75th PercentileHourly Wage 90th Percentile
Memphis, TN-MS-AR2,450$22.93$47,690$13.84$17.95$28.03$30.49
Chattanooga, TN-GA1,470$26.27$54,630$15.01$18.35$34.12$39.48
Clarksville, TN-KY260$25.43$52,900$17.88$20.41$30.97$37.03
Kingsport-Bristol-Bristol, TN-VA550$22.10$45,980$12.71$16.61$27.68$33.35
Cleveland, TN150$25.60$53,250$16.47$19.02$29.56$34.95
Jackson, TN340$26.71$55,570$15.78$19.93$30.10$38.66
Johnson City, TN120$19.20$39,940$15.71$16.75$21.64$24.50
Knoxville, TN2,110$22.80$47,420$14.13$16.38$28.47$35.79
Morristown, TN130$22.55$46,900$13.40$16.33$28.20$33.30
Nashville-Davidson--Murfreesboro--Franklin, TN4,050$24.19$50,320$16.90$20.14$28.08$31.71

Electrical Apprenticeship Programs in Tennessee

To become an electrician in Tennessee, you can enter a program at a community or technical college, but ultimately you need to find an apprenticeship for hands-on training. Tennessee has five union-sponsored electrical apprenticeship programs.  

These five programs are operated through local JATCs (Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee) and sponsored by the joint trust of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). They include locations in Tennessee’s biggest cities:

Union training programs offer income, job stability and benefits, but they are competitive. To apply, you must have a GED or diploma, a passing grade in algebra, a passing score on a bath and reading test, and be at least 18 years old. Another competitive, union-related apprenticeship is through the Tennessee Valley Authority.

You also have two non-union options for electrical apprenticeships in Tennessee. One is through the Greater Tennessee Associated Builders and Contractors. The other is the Mid-South International Electrotechnical Commission. With these programs, you get on-the-job training with pay but also take classes and must pay tuition, about $2,400 per year.

Electrician Training in Tennessee

Future electricians can choose to pursue a schooling program to receive an education and transition into an apprenticeship, or begin their training by directly applying for a union, company or non-union apprenticeship.

To pursue a union-affiliated apprenticeship, you must be registered with the union, be at least 18 years old, have a diploma or GED, pass an algebra class or test, and pass an aptitude test. Individuals who meet these qualifications can register with a Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC) program in Chattanooga, Knoxville, Memphis, Nashville or Oak Ridge, Tennessee. There are two non-union affiliated chapters, located in Memphis and Nashville, that are available with the same requirements, but individuals will need to find their work.

Electricians who are not residents of the regions mentioned above can apply to receive a limited license electrician (LLE) certification that is recognized by smaller areas of the state. The license does not replace electrician licenses and is not recognized statewide. Electrical contracting permits are also an option in Tennessee to those who are qualified and pass exams on electrical technology and business and law. These licenses are recognized statewide and do not have limitations like the LLE.

  • Chattanooga State Community College. Electricians can obtain an associate’s degree in electrical engineering technology in Chattanooga, Dayton and Kimball.

Tennessee Electrician License Requirements

To become a licensed electrician in Tennessee, you will need to determine requirements with your local licensing authority. Here are licensing requirements for larger cities:

  • Knoxville. There are four types of electrician licenses in Knoxville. The Knoxville Board of Electrical Examiners oversees and approves permits for electrical contractors, residential contractors, electrical maintenance and appliance dealers. Experience requirements range from two to five years depending on the license.
  • Nashville. The only permits issued in Nashville are master electrician licenses. Journeyman licenses are not found in Nashville, and all electricians must have three years of apprenticeship work and three years of electrician work, or an engineering degree, to obtain a license.
  • Memphis. Memphis residents can earn journeyman electrician and master electrician licenses. Requirements are based on age and a minimum of three and four years of experience, respectively. Both licenses are issued based on qualifications and exam scores.
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Where to Find Work in Tennessee

Tennessee offers a wide variety of available jobs for electricians for the wide range of licenses. There are plenty of employment opportunities for electricians of all types, regardless of training, specialty and experience or licences. Master electricians and electrical contractors have the greatest variety of jobs and higher-paying opportunities available because of their high level of expertise. Limited License Electricians can only work on projects that cost less than $25,000, which restricts the positions they seek.

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College Programs

Eastern Tennessee Nonmetropolitan Area Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Athens

1635 Technology Way, Athens, Tennessee 37371-0848
(423) 744-2814
Electrician Helper – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. All programs are offered at their Athens campus in the town of Athens. Most of the school’s 294 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Electrician Helper program are around $4,740 annually, while books and supplies may cost around $3,000. Program completion is normally 16 months.

Jackson, TN Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Jackson

2468 Technology Center Drive, Jackson, Tennessee 38301
(731) 424-0691 x114
Electrician Apprentice Level 2 – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. All programs are offered at their Jackson campus in Jackson in Madison County. Most of the school’s 420 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees are, as a rough guide, around $4,038 annually, while books and supplies may cost around $2,345, although this varies from program to program.

Johnson City, TN Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Elizabethton

426 Highway 91, Elizabethton, Tennessee 37643
(423) 543-0070
Electronics Assembler – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. All programs are offered at their Elizabethton campus in Elizabethton in Carter County, Tennessee. The college has approximately 559 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Electronics Assembler program are in the order of $4,750 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $2,811. The typical program completion time is 16 months.

Kingsport-Bristol-Bristol, TN-VA Area

Northeast State Community College

2425 Hwy 75, Blountville, Tennessee 37617-0246
(423) 323-3191
Electrical Technology – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Electrical Technology at Northeast State Community College is offered at their campus in Blountville in Sullivan County, TN. The college has approximately 6,084 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges. Tuition fees for in-state students are generally in the order of $4,152 and for students from outside the state approximately $16,128 annually. Books and supplies can cost around $1,400, although this will depend on the program.

Knoxville, TN Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Knoxville

1100 Liberty Street, Knoxville, Tennessee 37919
(865) 546-5567
Industrial Electricity – Certificate Program

The Industrial Electricity Certificate program in Industrial Electricity at Tennessee College of Applied Technology is offered at their Knoxville campus in the city of Knoxville, TN. Most of the school’s 1,108 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The retention rate of full-time students at this college is 88%. The cost of tuition is in the order of $4,662 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $2,010, depending on the program chosen.

Memphis, TN-MS-AR Area

Southwest Tennessee Community College

737 Union Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee 38103
(901) 333-5000
Electrical/Electronic Fundamentals Technical – Certificate Program, Electronic Technology – Associate Program

Southwest Tennessee Community College offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. All programs are based at their campus in the city of Memphis, TN. The college has in the region of 9,135 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges. The cost of tuition for in-state students is usually around $4,155 and for out-of-state students in the order of $16,131 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $1,500, depending on the program chosen.

Morristown, TN Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Morristown

821 W Louise Ave, Morristown, Tennessee 37813-2094
(423) 586-5771
Electrician Apprentice – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. All programs are based at their Morristown campus in the city of Morristown, TN. Most of the school’s 761 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees are around $4,990 per year. Study materials can cost about $2,589, depending on the program.

Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, TN Area

Nashville State Community College

120 White Bridge Rd, Nashville, Tennessee 37209-4515
(615) 353-3333
Electrical Engineering Technology – Certificate Program

Nashville State Community College’s Certificate-level Electrical Engineering Technology program is based at their campus in the city of Nashville. This public college has about 10,192 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges. Fees for tuition for in-state students are in the order of $4,065 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $16,041 yearly, while study materials may cost about $1,512, depending on the program.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology Nashville

100 White Bridge Rd, Nashville, Tennessee 37209-4515
(615) 425-5500 x5540
Electrician Helper – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology Nashville offers various Certificate program options for future professionals. Classes are taken at their campus in the city of Nashville, TN. The majority of of the school’s 931 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The cost of tuition is in the order of $4,038 yearly, while study materials may cost about $2,521, depending on the program.

North Central Tennessee Nonmetropolitan Area Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Jacksboro

265 Elkins Rd, Jacksboro, Tennessee 37757
(423) 566-9629 x100
Industrial Electricity – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Industrial Electricity at Tennessee College of Applied Technology is taught at their Jacksboro campus in the town of Jacksboro, TN. This public college has around 223 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Fees for tuition are, as a rough guide, about $4,038 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $2,537, although this varies from program to program.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-McMinnville

241 Vo Tech Dr, McMinnville, Tennessee 37110
(931) 473-5587
Electrician Apprentice – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future professionals. All programs are taught at their McMinnville campus in the town of McMinnville. The college has around 276 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The college’s retention rate for full-time students is over 80%. Fees for tuition are about $4,038 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $2,835, although this varies from program to program.

South Central Tennessee Nonmetropolitan Area Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Pulaski

1233 E College St, Pulaski, Tennessee 38478-0614
(931) 424-4014
Electrical and Plumbing Construction Technology – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology’s Certificate program in Electrical and Plumbing Construction Technology is taught at their Pulaski campus in the town of Pulaski, Tennessee. The majority of of the school’s 1,003 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Fees for tuition are about $4,038 yearly, while study materials may cost about $2,265, depending on the program.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Shelbyville

1405 Madison St, Shelbyville, Tennessee 37160-3629
(931) 685-5013
Industrial Electrician – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future professionals. All programs are taught at their Shelbyville campus in the town of Shelbyville, Tennessee. This public college has round 562 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Fees for tuition are about $6,230 yearly, while study materials may cost about $1,811, depending on the program.

Western Tennessee Nonmetropolitan Area Area

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Crump

3070 Hwy. 64 West, Crump, Tennessee 38327
(731) 632-3393 x221
Electronics Technology – Certificate Program

The Electronics Technology Certificate program in Electronics Technology at Tennessee College of Applied Technology is based at their Crump campus in the town of Crump, Tennessee. This public college has approximately 289 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The retention rate of full-time students at this college is over 80%. Tuition fees for the Electronics Technology program are likely to be in the order of $4,740 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $1,500. Program completion is usually 16 months.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Newbern

340 Washington St, Newbern, Tennessee 38059
(731) 627-2511
Electronics Tester – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. Classes are taken at their Newbern campus in Newbern in Dyer County. Most of the school’s 375 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The cost of tuition is in the order of $4,038 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $3,055, although this will vary with the program.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Ripley

127 Industrial Drive, Ripley, Tennessee 38063
(731) 635-3368 x207
Electrician Helper – Certificate Program

Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers various Certificate program options for future opticians. All programs are based at their Ripley campus in the town of Ripley. The college has around 204 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Tuition fees for the Electrician Helper program are broadly about $4,740 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,217. Usually, the program is completed in 16 months.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Whiteville

1685 Highway 64, Whiteville, Tennessee 38075-0489
(731) 254-8521
Electrical – Certificate Program

The Certificate program in Electrical at Tennessee College of Applied Technology can be taken at their Whiteville campus in Whiteville in Hardeman County, TN. The majority of of the school’s 241 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. Fees for tuition are about $4,038 for each academic year, while study materials may cost roughly $1,983, depending on the program.

* College accredition status and tuition fees and are, to our best knowledge, correct at the time of writing, and sourced from the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Check all details directly with college before applying.

Neighbor States

See options in the neighboring states of Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas and Missouri.

FAQs

How much do electricians earn in the state of Tennessee?

According to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics, electricians in the state of Tennessee made an average of $50,440 per year in 2019. Entry-level electricians earned around $32,020 and some experienced professionals earned salaries as high as $73,340.