Celebrating careers in the energy field in 2021

Lineworkers, sure — that’s a given — but the diversity of employees at electric cooperatives goes way beyond them.

Engineers. Financial analysts. Graphic designers. Meeting coordinators. GIS mappers. Customer service representatives. Purchasing specialists. IT professionals. Broadband marketers. Dispatchers. Videographers. And more.

Think of them as #Powerful Careers.

During 2021, the Virginia, Maryland & Delaware Association of Electric Cooperatives will spotlight careers in energy to attract prospective employees entering the workforce, professionals looking for a career change or workers who have been affected by pandemic-related budget cuts.

With our 15 member cooperatives in the three-state area, we will highlight employees with nontraditional backgrounds in the pages of Cooperative Living, online at vmdaec.com and co-opliving.com, and through our social media channels. We’ll be at job fairs, co-op annual meetings and community meetings.

It’s a rich field to draw from, with nearly 1,800 cooperative employees in our member cooperative systems.

We’ll be using the hashtag #PowerfulCareers, and we invite you to read, like, follow and share our information with the next generation of co-op employees.

Our co-op employees have great stories to tell. By sharing them with hundreds of thousands of readers, we hope to interest them in a co-op career, and the stability, security and fulfillment those jobs bring.

Powerful Careers: Ryan Barrack

Just a few weeks before Christmas, on a mandatory conference call, Ryan Barrack learned that the bank he had worked at for more than a decade was being sold. “What does tomorrow hold for my family?” he thought. Later, as he and his wife pulled into a retail parking lot, they saw a truck in front of the store entrance with a trailer loaded with bicycles. Barrack looked at his wife and said, “That would be where you’d want to work. Look at the commitment to the...

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Where the Jobs Are and Where the Jobs Will Be

Where the Jobs Are and Where the Jobs Will Be

If you’re looking for a meaningful career, look first at your electric cooperative. That’s because there will be plenty of job openings at co-ops in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and nationally in the next few years. The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association tracks jobs, job openings and prospective retirements at its more than 900 co-ops in 48 states. The most recent NRECA data, from its 2020 workforce survey, shows opportunity across a wide range of fields. In Virginia, Maryland and...

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Career and Technical Education: The Key to Economic Development

Career and Technical Education: The Key to Economic Development

The energy industry employs 7 million workers who help power our homes, offices, schools, hospitals, cars and more. With consumers and policymakers increasingly focused on improving and diversifying energy production and distribution, job opportunities are expanding in providing clean energy, helping the environment and conserving natural resources. This includes about 320 unique occupations in clean energy production, energy efficiency and environmental management. Several of the...

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Keeping the Lights On

Keeping the Lights On

Although electric power has been around more than 100 years, it’s a high-tech industry where even the traditional jobs call for expertise and innovation. Veterans and cybersecurity experts make up today’s electric co-op workforce. “The role of the lineworker may seem straightforward,” says a recent report, Powering America: The Economic Workforce Contributions of the U.S. Electric Power Industry, sponsored in part by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. “However, the day-to-day...

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