|Oregon Apprenticeship Guide|
Are you prepared for the challenge?
Climb the ladder of success
Preparation for apprenticeship programs
Glossary of Apprenticeship Terminology
Are You Prepared for the Challenge?
You are ready for a change. A new or first career opportunity. Something that offers a competitive pay package. Good health benefits. A solid retirement plan. Being part of a highly skilled and respected workforce.
Apprenticeship is the first step toward preparing yourself for a lifetime career. It requires commitment and dedication. You should choose your trade carefully. Will it be the right fit for you? Would you enjoy doing it?
Keep in mind you are looking for work in a very competitive field. If you get discouraged along the way, or if someone tells you "no," then maybe you´re talking to the wrong person. Be persistent. Your enthusiasm works for you, not against you.
Call apprenticeship programs directly, even if they´re full or not accepting applications at this time. See if they offer any orientations. Ask for an informational interview or see if you can visit a work site or shop.
Age and Education: Most trades require that you be 18 years old and have a high school diploma or GED. You may need specific math training for certain occupations. Basic reading and writing skills are expected.
Physical Ability: Some trades may be unsuitable for people who don´t have the necessary strength or stamina to perform the required work.
Getting to Work: A career in the construction trades requires reliable transportation. Occasionally, you may work in your own city or even your own neighborhood, but you must be willing to travel locally or possibly out of town.
Even if you work for the same employer, you may need to report to different job sites day to day. Occasionally, you may be asked to go to two sites in one day. So, reliable transportation is very important.
Workers who travel long distances may carpool, take turns driving or coordinate rides. Usually, you will be on your own to get to work, often starting early and staying late. In the Portland area, Tri-Met buses and light rail are available, but a trustworthy car or truck is preferable.
Climb the Ladder of Success
- Decide what crafts or trades you are interested in and whether you want to be in a union or open shop program.
- Contact BOLI´s Apprenticeship and Training Division at 971-673-0760 for more information or surf our website here.
- Call or visit your chosen apprenticeship programs and find out exactly how to apply: Are they open for applications? What are the steps to take? How can I prepare myself when I apply?
- Submit an application during the open periods (some trades are open all the time, others are open only once a year).
- Stay in touch with the apprenticeship program coordinator to show your interest.
- Attend a scheduled interview during the open application process.
- Get on the list of apprentices to be "indentured". This means you are enrolled and ready to go to work. Once you are on the list, depending on the trade, you may either find work or be referred to work by the apprenticeship program.
- Go to work with a "registered training agent". This is a contractor who has agreed to train apprentices.
- Attend related training classes - usually in the evening or on weekends.
- Earn, learn and progress through all the phases of your training until you become a skilled journeyworker.
Preparation for Apprenticeship Programs
Preparation for apprenticeship programs gives you the experience you need to qualify for apprenticeship programs. Typically, students get hands-on experience in many of the basic skills required to enter an apprenticeship training program through class instruction.
If you cannot meet the apprentice program´s minimum requirements or need more experience with the tools of the trade, contact the following programs to find out about opportunities. Some age or income restrictions apply.
Pre-Apprenticeship Program Information
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Portland State Office Building: 800 NE Oregon, Suite 1045 - Portland, OR 97232
Portland: (971) 673-0760 Bend: (541) 322-2435 Medford: (541) 776-6201 Salem: (503) 378-2313
Eugene: (541) 686-7623