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Climbing the infrastructure ladder with FastForward and VCCS

It’s not your imagination. The infrastructure industry is booming. In small towns and vast cities, on dirt roads and interstates, almost everywhere you look there are signs of growth. With federal dollars pouring in and an ever present need, this train won’t be stopping any time soon.

You might be asking yourself how you find a career in infrastructure and help build the Virginia of tomorrow. Well, there are many places to start. FastForward is committed to not only providing the opportunities, but also the guidance. Let us walk you through how to climb to various careers on the infrastructure ladder (pun intended).

Electrical Power Line Workers

Power line workers are essential to keeping the state and country’s power grid running efficiently and safely. The work of a repair technician is highly specialized and takes an immense amount of skill and concentration. But the job is ultimately rewarding and profitable. In Virginia, the take-home salary range can be between $45,000 and $78,000.

Industrial Maintenance Technician

An industrial maintenance technician is essentially one of the next logical steps from a power line worker. These types of technicians are tasked with installing, maintaining and repairing industrial machinery. On top of that, they troubleshoot technical issues and provide preventative care and maintenance. Averaging about $51,000 in annual salary, these technicians can work their way up to the position of electrical engineer.

Asphalt Plant Operator

We’ve covered the asphalt industry on our blog before, yet it’s worth touching on again to show how asphalt is so much more than laying pavement. A growing industry within the larger infrastructure universe, asphalt jobs pay a livable wage from day one: construction equipment operators (which include asphalt workers) earn an average of $38,658 a year according to data from ZipRecruiter. After a few years of experience and further training an asphalt worker may be able to move up to the level of asphalt plant operator, where they can make about $48,055 a year in Virginia.


Welders come in all shapes and sizes. Don’t believe us? The American Welding Society’s website lists 15(!) different career paths in the welding industry, covering everything from office jobs to building submarines. Salaries can vary, but start out quite reasonable: an entry-level welding technician can make between $33,000-38,000 here in Virginia.

Many FastForward alumni have received their welding certificates and now work at places such as Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) in the Hampton Roads area and at local welding shops in their region.

How FastForward fits into the picture

If you’re excited to join the infrastructure industry, then you are in luck. Every sector covered above falls under the FastForward umbrella, which means you can start training now at your local community college.

If you’re interested in pursuing any of these career paths, we’re here to help! To learn more about the FastForward programs available near you as well as financial assistance programs and incentives, contact us today and we’ll put you in touch with your local career coach.