Why should you choose an apprenticeship rather than the alternative of a four year degree? For starters, you start receiving compensation from your apprenticeship immediately. Those who choose the four year degree option build up a lot of education debt and have to obtain an additional job to make money. With an apprenticeship, your education and training is your job. Apprentices receive on the job training along with all of the necessary knowledge to have a successful career in their industry of choice. They get all of this plus a regular salary.
A variety of different industries offer apprenticeship but you will find the bulk of the programs in the construction industry and their related fields. These are usually obtained through local unions or local contractors. These programs also tend to be quite competitive, especially when they are union sponsored. Everyone loves the opportunity to receive paid job training so you will need to make sure your application stands out above the rest.
Apprenticeships are not just limited to the construction fields. There are also opportunities available in fields such as child care and early childhood education. Likewise, you will find additional apprenticeship programs that are in skilled crafts or trade industries such as in musical instrument making or repair as well as in fine furniture making. These non-construction related apprenticeships are, however, a bit more difficult to find.
To be a recognized as an apprentice in the state of Minnesota, apprentices must register with the state and have a sponsor. Most of the apprenticeships are regulated by the state government and require most apprentices to take and pass a state-issued exam upon completion of their apprenticeship program. This exam typically elevates the apprentice to journeyman status and licenses them in their field. Here are just some of the apprenticeship programs that the state of Minnesota has to offer.
The Southern Minnesota Electricians in Rochester, Minnesota offer an apprenticeship that is funded by the South Central Minnesota Committee for the Electrical Industry (SCMJATC). Under this program, experienced electricians teach apprentices the skills and knowledge they will need to advance their careers. In addition to on-the-job training, apprentices must also receive classroom instruction. To apply for the program applicants must pass an aptitude test and submit an application with a $40 fee.
Once selected into the program apprentices start with a pay rate between $14.14 and $23.32 per hour. Pay increases are given predetermined intervals throughout the program. Apprentices are required to pay for their own books and other course materials; however, tuition for the courses is free. Once the program has been completed, apprentices must take the Minnesota State License Exam in order to be elevated to journeyman status and to be able to be a licensed electrician.
The Local 49 Operating Engineers Training Center offers two separate apprentice training programs: Heavy Machine Operator and Crane Operator programs. The heavy machine apprenticeship is a 4000 hour program that typically takes 3 years to complete. Apprentices receive on the job training and are also required to complete 288 hours of classroom instruction at the Local 49 Training Center. In addition to valuable job training, apprentices get paid and also receive benefits such as a health and pension plan. When applying, applicants have to pass the Ramsey Corp Job Skills Assessment with a 70% or better. Additionally, applicants must have already found their sponsoring employer.
The Crane Operator Apprentice Program requires that an apprentice has already completed two years of the heavy machine operator apprenticeship and can pass a written exam. The minimum time that must be spent in this program is 8000 hours. At the end, apprentices should have all of the skills and knowledge to operate cranes safely and effectively while also following all safety rules.
By the end of either of these programs offered by the Local 49, apprentices will leave with all of the skills and knowledge they may need to be effective heavy machine operators and ultimately a life-long rewarding career.
These are not the only apprenticeship opportunities that you can find in Minnesota. Programs are offered for a wide range of careers such as for painters, wallcoverers, drywall finishers, lathers, plasterers, and tile workers, pipefitters, plumbers, sheet metal workers, sprinkler fitters, bricklayers, cabinet makers, carpenters, drivers, iron workers, boilermakers, construction managers, elevator constructors, laborers, millwrights, roofers and much more. After completing any apprenticeship in any of these careers, you will be left with everything you need to have a successful career in that trade. And all throughout your training, you will be receiving compensation and many times health benefits. Additionally, a lot of programs immediately help you to start your 401K savings as well. Apprenticeships are clearly great options for anyone who does not wish to get a traditional four year degree and obtain all of the debt that typically comes with them.