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Oswego Career Ladders - Craft And Trade Workers

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Craft And Trade Workers

Industry: Energy
Area: Nuclear

The nuclear energy field has apprenticeship programs that provide entry level workers with the opportunity to enter the field with a high school diploma. Initially, trainees receive pre-technical instruction in measurements and mathematics to build a foundation for technical training. Scientific, mechanical technologies, and electrical/electronics courses are then provided to expand the apprentice's knowledge in energy generation. Finally, on the job training is provided in machinery and equipment operation and maintenance.

Work Settings

A nuclear power plant is not all that different from coal, oil, or gas fired plants. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), part of our government, licenses the use of nuclear material and inspects users to make sure they follow the rules for safety.


The minimum requirement is a high school diploma supplemented by some amount of relevant experience.

Job Outlook

Operators are expected to have employment growth about as fast as the average for all occupations though 2014. 


Salaries vary widely. Entry level workers can have a starting pay of $22/hour per hour.

Work Schedule

Most apprentices would work a standard 40-hour week. However, they would work on a rotating schedule of 8-12 hours as 24 hour coverage is needed. During refueling outages (every 2 years), everyone works overtime 12 hours/day 6 days a week for 30 days.

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