Carpentry is a useful trade that involves building and installing wooden structures, furniture, and fixtures. The majority of carpenters enter the trade through an apprenticeship, which allows them to learn practical skills from a master carpenter while both earning a wage and completing a nationally recognized certificate. A career in carpentry could be lucrative if you appreciate hands-on work and have good physical skills and dexterity. In this post, we’ll go over what a carpentry apprenticeship entails and share a step-by-step approach to getting started as a carpenter.
What do carpenter apprenticeships involve?
Apprenticeships in carpentry typically last four years and entail working and learning under the direction of a skilled tradesperson. Apprentice carpenters learn how to work with wood and improve their carpentry skills. Apprenticeships allow you to learn more about the carpentry industry. Working with consumers to define their needs, communicating with suppliers, and resolving issues as they emerge are all part of the carpentry process. Apprentices often spend one day per week at an accredited college and may be required to study in their own time.
What are apprentice carpenters, and what do they do?
Apprentice carpenter’s responsibilities
An apprentice carpenter’s responsibilities differ. Among your daily responsibilities, you may be expected to complete the following tasks:
- Supporting carpenters by offering them tools and materials
- Shadowing expert carpenters to learn from them on the job
- Handling, cleaning, and maintaining construction tools after finishing training and studies at a college or accredited institution
- Learning how to read and understand plans and diagrams
- Cleaning the workspace when a job is finished
- Building small constructions from designs with the assistance of an expert carpenter who assisted in the selection and ordering of wood and other supplies
- Assessing and repairing damaged structures by measuring, cutting, and assembling materials.
Did you know that specialist carpenter insurance is available for people who work in carpentry? You can learn more here.
How to become a carpenter apprentice
Beginning a carpentry apprenticeship involves a few steps:
- Accumulate relevant experience
Although it is not required for most carpentry apprenticeships, obtaining some experience on a construction site or doing other physically demanding job can help you land an apprenticeship. If you’re still in school, search for weekend or holiday work on construction projects. If you’ve graduated from high school but lack this type of experience, you might want to explore employment that allows you to gain hands-on experience while preparing for your apprenticeship.
- Think about enrolling in a pre-apprenticeship program.
A pre-apprenticeship course is not required to secure an apprenticeship, but it can help you stand out from the crowd. Many students complete TVET courses while still in school. Once a week, while in grades 10 and 11, you will have the opportunity to work on a construction site and develop practical skills. A TVET course counts toward your high school diploma and pays you while you’re still in school. A certificate, such as a Certificate I in Construction, is usually the product of TVET courses.
If you’ve previously graduated from high school, consider taking a Certificate II in Building and Construction course (Carpentry). This is a 10 week pre-apprenticeship program. It teaches carpentry skills like layout, measurement, and tool safety.
- Obtain a WHS white card.
Workers who work in construction zones on a regular basis have a WHS white card. To obtain a WHS white card, you must first complete a brief training session on building site safety rules and procedures. Your white card is valid as long as you continue to work in the construction industry. The card will expire if you do not work in construction for two years or more. Your company or school may be able to assist you in getting a white card.
- Create a CV
The goal of your CV is to highlight any relevant work experience, such as working on a construction site or other occupations that require construction or practical labour. Any additional part-time or full-time work experience can also be included, as these provide transferrable skills that can be used within any field. Include any pre-apprenticeship courses you’ve taken, as well as any exam scores or other certifications, on your resume.
- Look for apprenticeships in carpentry.
You can now search for apprentice carpenter jobs and filter the results by area, date, or pay to find the best opportunities for you. A TAFE college or institution can also provide training. The majority of apprentices undertake this in addition to their apprenticeship. In most cases, a carpentry apprenticeship lasts four years.