After spending 22 years with the Brownsville Public Utilities Board as a certified lineworker, Candelario Deanda is ready to climb to new heights. His new role is an Electrical Lineworker Technology instructor when Texas State Technical College introduces the program at its Harlingen campus this fall.
“We are still in the process of getting everything ready,” Deanda said. “I will be an instructor for courses in obtaining the certificate, as well as the associate of applied science degree.”
The program will entail both online learning and labs. They include the hands-on learning that TSTC is known for.
“Students will get to climb the poles and work with transformers,” he said. “It will never get boring.”
Lineworkers are often the first responders during power outages and major storms. This makes the hands-on learning not only fundamentally important, but also essential.
“If power lines go out, we fix the problem,” Deanda said. “Outside of weather circumstances, a lineworker’s day consists of work orders, digging for underground lines, setting the poles for new lines in subdivisions — all of that.
“There is always going to be a need for lineworkers,” he said. “There will always be a need for somebody to ensure the power is on and running.”
While Deanda has two decades of experience under his workman’s belt, the main lesson he hopes to pass on to his students is the importance of being safe in the field.
“I hope my students learn that safety is vital,” he said. “I will teach them the importance of wearing their gear and their gloves; that’s my priority. I want to ensure that I teach them everything I can.”