How do I Get Into an Apprenticeship?

For the most part, getting into an apprenticeship training program means first finding a job. Talk to employers whose businesses involve your chosen trade. Find out if the employer trains apprentices. Show your enthusiasm. Display your qualifications - courses taken in school, grades, and any related experience you have regarding the trade you have chosen. Ask to be hired.

For construction trade apprenticeships, contact the local Joint Apprenticeship Committee (JAC) of the trade that interests you. JAC is a volunteer committee in the construction industry that shares information about the specific trade. JAC generally directs individuals to a technical school or center where one can obtain applications and information on the trade of interest. Check the telephone directory yellow pages for the appropriate trade union and ask about the Joint Apprenticeship Committee application procedure. Non-union or open shop construction employers also train apprentices. The local Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards District Field Representative at the district Wisconsin Technical College System School can also provide you with information about all these programs, union and non-union.

For apprenticeship in manufacturing and service industries, contact the employer directly. Talk to someone in the firm's personnel office to find out their procedure for choosing apprenticeship candidates. Sometimes these apprenticeship programs are listed with Job Service, the area technical school or in newspaper want ads.

Often, in large industrial plants, apprenticeships are open only to workers already employed in the plant. In these situations, you must first be employed by the firm and then seek an apprenticeship.

Looking for an Apprenticeship is Just Like Looking for a Job. A word of caution - Do not be discouraged if you have to wait to get into an apprenticeship program! BE PERSISTENT!

Start a resume and continue your education through available courses at technical or trade schools. Employers appreciate an aggressive goal oriented applicant.

Interested applicants who have not found an employer willing to hire them may still proceed with the application process by meeting the minimum qualifications. Once all minimum qualifications have been met, the applicant will be placed on a qualified applicant list held by the Western Technical College Apprenticeship Office, 400 North 7th Street., Coleman Building, Room 114, La Crosse, WI 54601. The list is available to employers interested in sponsoring (hiring) an apprentice. The applicant may be issued a letter of introduction to employers stating that the applicant has met the minimum qualifications to become an apprentice.

For more information about Apprenticeship Training, contact:

Kathy O'Sullivan

Field Representative
Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards
402 N. 8th Street
La Crosse, WI 54601
Phone (608) 785-9176
Fax (608) 785-9327
Kathleen.OSullivan@dwd.state.wi.us

Western Technical College


Wendy Brownell
Coleman Center 114
400 North 7th Street
La Crosse, WI 54601
Phone 608.785.9172
Fax 608.785.9473