Electricity is really just organized lightning. —George Carlin

It’s pretty safe to say that we all try to stay away from lightning, but when we don’t have electricity, our worlds come to a standstill.  Out of the 397 National Park units,  80 have employees with “Electrician” or “Electrical” in their job title.  Typically those with that title have completed rigorous training and apprenticeship programs.  Advances in technology or new sources of power like wind or solar may prompt a skilled electrician to seek further training.  NPS-sponsored programs in alternative energy systems are offered a couple times a year and are advertised on this website and on InsideNPS. You may also be interested in programs available to make your park more sustainable–check out the Federal Energy Management Program’s portfolio of online training.

For the other 310+ NPS units the work of installing a new light fixture or putting a GFCI outlet next to a sink usually falls to our Jacks-and-Jills-of-All-Trades, the Maintenance Mechanic .  If you want to build upon the skills you have there’s lots of options but your best bet is to seek out a trades program at your local community college.  The Learning and Development branch of the NPS also partners with the Mott Training Center for the California State Parks to offer tiered Electrical training.  Like the alternative energy programs you’ll find those advertised on this website so check in often.

Nobody’s going to give you an electrician’s license with only 1 hour of online training but there is a FREE course offered through DOILearn and Skillsoft on DC Circuit Theory.  No, it’s not about how to get around our nation’s Capital;  this one-hour course is designed to provide you with a basic understanding of DC Electrical Theory. It is also intended to enhance your understanding of the operation and design of DC circuits, components, and sources. You will learn:

  • Basic DC electrical terms,
  • Equations and theory,
  •  and solve problems involving resistance, voltage, and current.

The content in this course is designed to comply with the intent of the applicable regulatory requirements. Learner objectives for this course are to:

  • Define the following terms: Voltage, Volt, Current, Ampere, Resistance, and Ohm;
  • Describe Ohm’s Law; solve problems using Ohm’s Law;
  • Calculate the total resistance in a series circuit;
  •  and calculate the total resistance in a parallel circuit.

Follow this link to immediately take the online training. After signing into DOILearn you’ll be taken directly to the page.


Learn More

Want to know more about the requirements for the job? Follow this link to view the standard Position Description Library, scroll down and click on the All Wage Grade PD’s.  Scroll down and you’ll find PD’s for Maintenance Mechanics, Electricians and Electrical Workers.  (Note: depending on a Park’s specific needs these PD’s may be modified for an actual job posting.)


Do you have a resource that would be valuable to this Program Area or is your team working on an interesting project? Leave a comment  below and tell us about it so we can feature it on our site.

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