A plumbing apprenticeship is the first step in a life-long career that doesn’t require tens of thousands of dollars in college education. In fact, you will earn while you learn.
What is a Plumbing Apprenticeship?
An apprentice is someone who learns how to do a job from someone more experienced. A plumbing apprenticeship is a program that teaches a student (the apprentice) everything about the plumbing trade.
Here’s Why You Need a Plumbing Apprenticeship
Becoming a plumber is a great career choice because it’s constantly in demand with employers always looking for good apprentices.
An apprentice begins getting paid while learning. Many plumbers will train their apprentices themselves, with no need for a degree. Once the apprenticeship is completed, the plumbing company often hires the apprentice. Or they can move on, obtain their license, and open their own business.
The need for qualified plumbers is growing at 12% annually. Rising demand for trained plumbers and drain technicians has resulted in an abundance of employment opportunities, with high pay and great benefits.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the median wage for plumbers as of May 2020 is $56,330 plus bonuses and benefits. That means half of the plumbers made more and half of the plumbers made less than that amount. The highest earners are in the six-figure range ($100,000 or more, plus bonuses and benefits).
How Do You Get a Plumbing Apprenticeship?
Here are the most common options you have for getting an apprenticeship:
- Vocational School. There are educational programs in nearly every city for learning how to become a plumber. This option includes classroom study and hands-on training, usually in a lab. But some programs have partnerships with companies that can provide some in-the-field training.
- Plumbing Mentor/Employer. A local plumber or plumbing company hires you as an apprentice and teaches you with mostly in-the-field, on-the-job training. Once you have learned the craft, the employer often will hire you as an official plumber or help you find a position elsewhere.
In either case, the goal is to become skilled enough in the trade to (1) be hired as a professional plumber or (2) open your own independent business.
How Does a Plumbing Apprenticeship Work?
The vast majority of apprenticeships get hands-on training, whether in a lab or in the field.
In a private setting, the apprentice will work side-by-side with a licensed plumber as an assistant. Much like a Jedi Knight, the plumber will teach his young Paduan Learner everything he needs to know until he is ready to assume the role of an official plumber.
This includes work on the most common jobs that come up daily to larger-scale projects like sewer line replacements. It also includes technical instruction (such as how to operate camera sewer line inspection equipment) and customer service training.
By having a close relationship with a mentor, you’ll also learn about the business in general. This might include operations, management, OSHA safety protocols, industry plumbing codes, and marketing. All of these are essential to have a successful career.
How Long is a Plumbing Apprenticeship?
Some apprenticeships can last 2 to 4 years. If you’re a fast learner with the right skills and attitude, you can be done in 6 to 12 months.
Is There a Plumbing Apprenticeship Near Me?
Opportunities for an apprenticeship are abundant because of the rising need of people in the plumbing trade. Just go online and you’ll find plenty of opportunities.
1-Tom-Plumber often hires apprentices, who become plumbers with the company with their own fully supplied van and uniforms. So, giving us a call is a good place to start. We also have franchisees throughout the country who are in need.
Then go down the line and call plumbing companies in your area to see what they have to offer. And don’t forget a vocational school. Although you have to pay for the program, they provide a thorough education in the plumbing trade.
1-Tom-Plumber’s certified team of plumbers and drain technicians respond immediately to any emergency plumbing, drain cleaning, or water damage problem. We also handle the excavation of underground water lines and sewer main lines. Our immediate-response team is available every day and night of the year, even on holidays.