An apprentice is someone who learns a skilled trade on the job under the direction of more experienced workers. Apprentices are employees and earn a salary while they learn a skilled trade. They also complete classroom instruction offered at a community college as a part of their training. The duties of an apprentice become more complex as his / her skills improve. Upon successful completion of the trade requirements, apprentices earn a Certificate of Apprenticeship or a Certificate of Qualification (“ticket”) that allows them to work on their own at a higher rate of pay. Most apprenticeships last two to five years, with an average of 85% of the apprentice’s time spent in the workplace.
The Benefits of Apprenticeships
- Train to meet the needs of new and emerging trades and occupations.
- Study curriculum and participate in training that are designed and supported by industry.
- Experience integrated hands-on training and enhanced “in-class” curriculum.
- Earn while you learn; increase your earning power as you progress.
- Enjoy a career that is motivating and provides opportunities for continued education.
- Become the solution to a forecasted critical shortage of skilled trades’ people throughout the province.
Becoming an apprentice can be an important first step to learning new skills and building a rewarding career. Jobs in the skilled trades pay well, are interesting and challenging, and are in high demand in many industries. The first step is to find an employer who is willing to take you on as an apprentice. You can do this by applying directly to an employer or a joint apprenticeship council at a union office. Once you have found an employer, you will register with the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) as an apprentice. An apprenticeship is a partnership between you as the apprentice, a sponsor/employer and the province of Ontario (ministry). The Province of Ontario will pay for approximately 85% of the tuition for the in-school training component while the apprentice is responsible to pay the balance of tuition fees.
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