In this Life on the Line series, we want you to get to know Manning Willis, a Spring 2022 graduate from the East Central Community College’s (ECCC) Weekend Lineman program, led by Lineman Instructor, Curtis Bradley.

Q: What made you choose the line program you completed?

Manning: “I chose to go to ECCC line school because I heard a lot of great things about the program and it was a weekend program. The program fits your schedule if you’re working or you have something going on in your life. They offer internships from certain companies around the area and the instructor is fantastic. Even with it being on the weekends you learn just as much as other schools who go all week.”

Q: Why did you choose this career over other opportunities?

Manning: “This career is all about helping the ones in need. I chose this career to serve the community. I love how the job is dangerous but you can always stay safe with the safety rules and equipment. I also love the brotherhood! It’s like no other!”

Utility lineman student, Manning Willis, is practicing hot stick work.

Q: What advice can you offer to others who are interested in getting started in the electrical utility industry?

Manning: “My advice would be to take the steps. Most people complain about line school but it is worth it, especially with the way the industry is now. Positions fill up quickly in this industry by people with either  line school or experience.”

Q: After completing the program, what was the recruitment process like?

Manning: “The process was basically a ton of applying & calling numbers you received from people or the company. The instructor helps as much as he cans but he can only do so much.”


At J.L. Matthews, we are a family-owned business since 1946 and are your one-stop shop for linemen, ironworkers, and arborists tools and gear.

J.L. Matthews has over 2,000 products from top brands like RudeDog USA, Bashlin, Hastings, and more. We provide free shipping to customers who spend over $75.

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