Affecting Change Through Education

Affecting Change Through Education

This piece was originally published in the October 2018 issue of electroindustry.

Bryan P. Holland, Southern Region Field Representative, NEMA

The NEMA field representatives’ contributions to state code adoption involves more than advocacy and support. Education plays a significant role before, during, and after the code adoption cycle.

This education can take on many forms and includes virtually all stakeholders.

  • Technical Analysis

Before the code update process begins, education includes a technical analysis of significant code changes since the last edition and a review of updates to electrical safety product Standards associated with those changes. The audiences at these seminars and workshops include design professionals, installers, and code enforcers. The ultimate goal is to familiarize them with the changes and to develop support for them.

  • Dispelling Misconceptions

Education during the code update process involves the regulatory or legislative body charged with voting for the code adoption. While these entities are interested in cost and benefit analyses, education may also dispel misconceptions, misunderstandings, and outright falsehoods that may have been provided by opponents to the updates being considered.

  • Installation and Enforcement

Once the updated code has been adopted and scheduled to go into effect, we want to see that the installation and use of electrical products is consistently interpreted and enforced. This becomes an opportunity to support and promote specific product Sections and application-specific technology, rather than the code as a whole.

Many NEMA Members continue to contribute and partner with a field rep during educational sessions and training events. This activity has led to many successful state code adoption campaigns and has raised the overall electrical safety of communities and society at large.

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