Apprenticeship programs combine on-the-job training (OJT) with related classroom instruction to produce a qualified journeyperson that has no equal. Apprenticeship has existed almost from the dawn of recorded history. It has withstood the test of time. Other work force training programs have tried, but none have been as successful as the system of apprenticeship that exists today. The first step towards working in the trades is to apply for an apprenticeship program.
For the thousands of young people coming out of high school who are not moving on to college, apprenticeship represents the best avenue for obtaining the education and on-the-job training for a high paying career. It also represents the best avenue for single parents transitioning from public assistance into the workplace and a future career in a skilled trade.
More than 66,000 wage-earning, taxpaying apprentices are on the job in California today, working in more than 200 different professions – from firefighters on the front lines to construction workers on the site of a high rise, apprentices are building skills for tomorrow as they build our state today.
Listed below are the steps an applicant should take when applying to an apprenticeship program:
1. Select a trade for which you have an aptitude or some previous experience and physical ability to perform.
2. Find out if you meet the minimum qualifications for that trade.
3. Decide whether you can work under the required job conditions which can sometimes be hazardous, dirty, uncomfortable, or otherwise unpleasant.
4. Apply to an apprenticeship program that suits you best (you may apply to more than one).
5. Take aptitude or other tests where required; be prepared with documentation such as official High School transcripts that may be requested when you apply.
6. If the apprenticeship committee has a waiting list of applicants, determine whether or not you are sufficiently interested in the occupation to wait for an opening, or whether you should seek another program. If you apply, keep in touch with the program to let them know of your continued interest.
7. Some apprenticeship committees have applicants find their own employment with a firm which participates in the apprenticeship program.