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Utility Line Work - Construction and Maintenance

Utility Line Work - Construction and Maintenance

Build your knowledge of the systems and computer controls, safety training and environmental awareness needed to work as a Powerline Technician.

Program Image
Start Date:
Typical Length:
1 Year
$8,695 (Domestic) • $11,350 (International)
Tuition is valid for the 2020-21 academic year. Program costs and fees (textbooks, supplies, etc.) are additional.
+Locations & Availability

September 2020
Campus/Location DeliveryIn-class – Complete your program through courses that are held at a campus.

Online – All program courses are delivered online.

Blended – Complete your program through a combination of online and in-class courses (some courses are delivered 100% online). In-class courses are held at a campus.

Collaborative – program is delivered virtually on campus
Cumberland Campus • Springhill Full time • In-class Waitlist This program location has a multi-year waitlist. Contact Admissions for more information.


Are you a team player with good hand-eye coordination? Do you value job safety? Are you comfortable with heights? These are a few of the strengths you will need to succeed in this line of work. The generation, transmission and distribution of electric power integrates mechanical, advanced electrical and electronic systems, computer controls and professional skills.

You learn:

  • safety and environmental awareness
  • electrical technology
  • computer utilization and communications that meet international standards.

You learn the theory in the classroom and apply it outdoors at NSCC's on-campus training facility. You gain further experience during your work placement.

Admission requirements

  • High School Graduation Diploma or equivalent, including Academic Grade 12 Math.
    • International students – High school diploma equivalency and English language requirements vary by country. View details
  • Qualified applicants (with complete applications) will be invited to an interview at the campus. Please be advised that candidates will be required to present a cover letter and resume at the time of the interview. Interviews are scheduled at the campus four times per year (fall, winter, spring, summer). The purpose of the interview is to:
    • Ensure you have researched this trade and have an understanding of the knowledge and skills that will be required for this unique training.
    • Give you an opportunity to meet with industry partners to determine whether the program is a good fit for your interests.
  • Your complete application must be received by June 1, 2020 to guarantee consideration for September 2020.
  • If you do not have the required academic credits, NSCC offers a variety of credit courses through the Academic and Career Connections program.

Program requirements

  • Portfolio Development – As part of your studies at NSCC, you develop a portfolio of your work; the portfolio captures your achievements and profiles your skills to employers.
  • Standard First Aid, CPR Level A

Tuition, fees and program costs

In addition to annual tuition, there are program costs (books, tools, etc.) and student fees for college services, health and dental plans, your student association and parking.

View detailed program fees page(s). Please note that tuition values on these pages are for 2019/20 and are meant for planning purposes only. They don't represent final amounts owing.

Work experience

  • Field experience (work placement) is a mandatory credit course completed at the end of your program. It provides you with the opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills outside of the classroom.
  • Opportunities are typically unpaid and last approximately 5 weeks.
  • Transportation, accommodations and other costs related to work placements are your responsibility.
  • For more information visit Work Experience Opportunities

Career options

  • Graduates may find employment in many occupations related to the industrial, commercial and construction trades and technologies such as line technician, arborist, technical sales and service representative, equipment operation and maintenance technician.
  • Learn more about labour market information – visit Career Options.

Choose NSCC

  • This program is a first step towards certification in the Powerline Technician trade. To become certified, you must register as an apprentice with Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency (NSAA). Once registered, you can transfer credit from this program towards your apprenticeship.
  • This is a highly innovative program of study that delivers comprehensive training by experienced faculty. You apply the theory at an outdoor training facility provided by NSCC and the industry.

Other info

  • This program is not offered at regular NSCC tuition.
  • Well-qualified applicants are team players, comfortable working at heights and in extreme conditions, have excellent hand-eye coordination and colour perception, have an aptitude for mechanics and are able to physically perform strenuous activities that the trade requires (e.g., lifting, pulling and climbing).
  • Employers may require you to have (or obtain) a Class 3 Driver's Licence with air brake endorsement. In addition, some employers may require clean drivers abstract.
  • Certification with a Red Seal – Powerline Technician is a designated trade in Nova Scotia. Graduates who complete an apprenticeship program in this trade are eligible to write the provincial certification exam, receive their certification and Red Seal. The Red Seal allows certified tradespersons to practise the trade in any province or territory in Canada – where the trade is designated – without having to write further examinations.
  • Additional skills and abilities, including math, reading and workplace skills, are essential for your success in Trades and Technology programs. See the Trades and Technology Preparation Checklist (PDF 23KB).
  • This program places a high importance on providing you with skills and knowledge to work safely in industry. You participate in a number of introductory safety awareness courses to prepare for employment.
  • Industrial safety standards require that you have adequate vision and colour perception to operate safely, in the shop and in the field, while performing tasks of the trade.
  • Many employers in this industry require a current, official Criminal Record check as part of the hiring process. A conviction on your criminal record may impact your ability to secure employment.

Courses may include

Course descriptions
Code Course
SAFE 1000   Introduction to WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems)
SAFE 1001   Introduction to NS OH&S Act
SAFE 1020   Introduction to Confined Space
SAFE 1021   Introduction to Hazard Identification
SAFE 1023   Introduction to Lock Out/Tag Out
SAFE 1025   Certified Fall Arrest and Protection
UTLW 1000   Safety and Due Diligence
UTLW 1001   Applied Mathematics and Electrical Theory I
UTLW 1002   Ropes, Rigging and Personal Tools
UTLW 1003   Utility Vehicles and Equipment
UTLW 1004   Utility Materials and Equipment
UTLW 1005   Line Protection and Grounds
UTLW 1006   Conductors, Cables and Wires
UTLW 1007   Transformer Theory and Application
UTLW 1008   Service Entrance and 3-Wire Systems
UTLW 1010   Professional Powerline Technician I
UTLW 1015   Powerline Practical Applications
UTLW 1020   Professional Powerline Technician II
UTLW 1100   Work Experience
UTLW 2001   Applied Mathematics and Electrical Theory II
WORK 1100   Workplace Mentoring I

Next Steps

  1. 1

    Visit NSCC

    Visit NSCC » Campus Tour
  2. 2

    Application Process

    Who Can ApplyHow to Apply
  3. 3

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