What is an Apprentice?

An apprentice is a worker who learns a craft skill through planned, supervised work on the job, plus related classroom instruction. Moreover, when working on the job, an apprentice is a regular part of the work force and earns wages while acquiring important skills.

The apprenticeship-training period for skilled occupations ranges from three to five years. Apprentices are taught the proper use, care and safe handling of the tools and equipment used in connection with their work. To round out their training, classroom work is required in subjects related to the trade.

Men and women 17½ or 18 years old (depending on the trade) are eligible to apply. Applicants must be physically able to do the work of the trade. Some trades require an entry examination. Most trades require applicants to be a high school graduate or possess a General Education Development (G.E.D.) certificate. Apprenticeship programs provide employment opportunity to all persons, regardless of race, sex, ethnic group or age.

For all trades, equal opportunity in apprenticeship means that you will be considered for training without regard to race, national or ethnic origin, religion, sex, veteran status, or disability.

Apprenticeship Programs

Apprenticeship is a combination of paid on-the-job training and related classroom instruction in which workers learn the practical and theoretical aspects of a highly skilled occupation. Apprentices earn while they learn. Apprenticeship programs are operated on a voluntary basis by employers, employer associations or management and labor groups. The related classroom instruction is given in the program sponsor's training facility or a local technical school or junior college.

It also means equal treatment in pay, promotions, layoffs and evaluations. Women are strongly encouraged to find out about the wide range of jobs that can be learned through apprenticeships.

Apprenticeships in the building trades offer women excellent opportunities for employment in jobs that are both personally satisfying and well paid. The apprenticeship system provides the opportunity for learning to become a highly skilled worker while receiving wages during the training period.

It is this combination of training and employment that makes an apprenticeship an option the construction industry would like to make available to more women.