# Is being a certified rigger a good job route?

#### DJHiggumz

##### Member
I am a Junior in high school and I currently work as a mobile dj. I have a pretty nice setup for my age as I have accumulated 4 roboscan 812s, CX2's Led par 64's and r and g lasers. just recently I ran a production for a DJ at a club (doesn't have a system) and I realized I enjoy being the sound and lighting technician more than I like being a DJ. Just last night I went to a rave for the first time, and after seeing the light show it really had me thinking about continuing as a production company. with that said there would be a necessity to fly systems which requires a certified rigger.

I looked online and i read about a course that takes a week and $2,000 to get certified. for just running my own business that is a good investment, but I was wondering if there is a demand for certified riggers. could I take that as a career path, contracting for lighting companies or events? Installations? would it be a sufficient salary? >$40,000? I live in mid-west Wisconsin, but It is possible to move to Chicago or Milwaukee.

recap of questions
1. Is there a demand for certified riggers?
2. What is an average salary?

#### DuckJordan

##### Well-Known Member
Like everyone said, a rigging class may get you a connection. I got my connection working at my local theater and showing that I can make decisions, work well in a team environment, and took every chance i got to help out the down rigger. That included being the steel monkey, grabbing him coffee, pushing the motor boxes to their positions and watching him work with the guys up on grid. I had to work my butt off and after a year they put me into the training seminar which is only the first step at our facility. The only way to get in is to show you want to, and work with the guys for a long time. You also have to prove that you will tell people to shut up when it comes to safety. Being a rigger means being that guy to say hell no to that road TD who says the show has to go up and he wants you to use broken steel and a bent shackle.

#### JLNorthGA

##### Active Member
I was pretty much in your shoes many years ago - except that we really didn't have DJs back then. I got a job with a local lighting company as a warehouse grunt. I eventually got to go out on gigs and help with arena and stadium set-ups. I also worked construction. It took a few years to make real money - in other words it was great to have a day job. A single class isn't going to mean much to any of the companies - they want work experience. It also is a physical job. There is a lot of grunt, heave and carry. Can you lift 75-100 lbs? Repeatedly?

#### cmckeeman

I looked online and i read about a course that takes a week and $2,000 to get certified. who is this class offered by? #### BillConnerFASTC ##### Well-Known Member I believe the certification the OP is asking about is one that comes with this week long$2k class.
That would make that "graduate" a certificate holder or certificated, not certified. Certificated means you hold a certificate. I have many. Certified implies training, experience, and testing. I'm a certified ETCP Rigger - Theatre. Some would say i'm certifiable, but neither they nor I can prove that. Google "certificated vs certified". From one such entry:

In use, however, certificated seems to belong to the educational sphere, while certified is the word used to describe standards and qualifications in other occupations and industries. Until recently, I’ve thought of certificated as chiefly British usage, but the term occurs very frequently now in the U.S. educational context. Certified derives from the verb to certify; certificated from the noun certificate. The verb entered the language before the noun. First came certify to describe the act of making certain. Then came certificate for the document that attested to the certainty.

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#### josh88

##### Remarkably Tired.
Fight Leukemia
Sounds like Rigstar to me.
RIGSTAR Rigging School
Thats what I was thinking too. It's worth noting that they have 3 levels of "certification" now, the newest addition being geared (in their words) to people wanting to do rigging for a tour. It's a 200 hour course over 4 weeks.

But yeah their Certs are just cards that say they've passed one of the levels and the hours they logged doing it. Though the back of the card has typos and doesn't make me feel like I'd take the chance and trust the person holding it.

#### LavaASU

##### Active Member
Rigstar sure takes themselves seriously. I have no idea the quality of their training, but I'd be a bit dubious of someone waving their card around.

#### cmckeeman

##### Active Member
i know some guys that have done rigstar and while they both had previous training and made sure to stay on top of it afterwards, but i hear you do get a CM tech cert from the program.