Industrial Control Technician Elizabeth Berger’s path to UCEC started by studying graphic design. It seems like a fair distance from designing with pixels to panel wiring, but Elizabeth says the two are closer than one would think. Wiring electrical control panels comes with its own flair and artistry, Elizabeth says. “I have to argue that being an artist helps with my position at UCEC. My panels are the prettiest,” she says with a laugh.
While on a break from studying graphic design, Elizabeth heard about UCEC from family friend Paula Zangari. She came in to interview nearly a year ago, landed the job and selected the wiring side of the shop to begin her training.
Elizabeth’s father is an electrician, but she herself knew very little about wiring and even less about electrical control panels. “The first month as an Industrial Control Technician was very overwhelming,” she says. “I would say, ‘Just tell me what to do.’” Then, Elizabeth filled in for a colleague on medical leave in the warehouse. Something clicked once she returned to the shop floor. “I’ve been off and running ever since,” Elizabeth notes. “My knowledge of panel design and electrical controls has grown exponentially.”
Elizabeth says her job is very satisfying because of the complexity of wiring panels. UCEC’s open door policy for customers means that a client might stand next to her as she works on their panel. “It can be nerve-wracking, but I just try to work efficiently,” she says.
Current wiring projects for Elizabeth include working on a panel for a large canning company. As the only female on the shop floor, Elizabeth says she’s used to people asking her, “You do what?” “I definitely get a lot of double takes,” she says.
Away from the shop, Elizabeth is honing her artistic skills. When asked what she works on, she rattles off the usual suspects: acrylic inks, watercolor and, “ironically, wire sculptures,” Elizabeth says.
Other hobbies include going out with friends to movies, restaurants and Rockies games. She’s also taking online classes, working on finishing up her associate’s degree.