Apprentice Q&A: Kelly Ann Vanhoudt, IECRM : Emily Griffith Technical College

Apprentice Q&A: Kelly Ann Vanhoudt, IECRM

Apprentice Q&A: Kelly Ann Vanhoudt, IECRM

Kelly Ann Vanhoudt

Program: Electrician Apprenticeship, IEC Rocky Mountain

Tell us about yourself. What influenced you to become an apprentice?

I grew up with an electrical engineer as a dad. I was always by his side, helping out with whatever he was working on. I was soldering circuit boards by the time I was 12. By 23 I’d spent the majority of my professional life working in healthcare and needed a change. I wanted a hands-on career and decided to become an electrician. 

I moved from a small town in Montana to the city to attend school. When I went to sign up for my classes, they told me they were making changes to the degree and it wouldn’t be available that year. So, I got a job as a cashier and did all the work to get on the list for the Montana Electric Union. I was on the list for two years before finally moving to Colorado. I was enrolled in school and had a job in two months. The rest is history! 

What do you do as an apprentice and what does a typical day look like?

I’ve been working on large-scale apartment buildings for the past year and a half. Recently, I changed jobs to small-scale single-family homes. I’m either roughing or trimming these homes.

What has been your favorite project that you have worked on?

My favorite project so far was an apartment complex in Denver. I was able to do a lot of pipe bending, which was a lot of fun and looked pretty cool when finished.

​​Is there anything else you wish to share?

Being a woman in this industry can be tough, but it can also be rewarding.