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Construction laborers perform a wide range of physically demanding tasks involving building and highway construction, tunnel and shaft excavation, hazardous waste removal, environmental remediation, and demolition.
As construction work becomes more dependent on the use of complex equipment and machinery and a broader selection of materials and techniques the construction craft laborer is increasingly expected to have enhanced competencies in using, managing, and understanding resources, information, and technology. They also need to have basic communication, comprehension, and interpersonal skills.
A Construction Craft Laborer takes pride in the fact that they have a hand in every structure built in this country - below ground as well as above. They are one of the first crafts on the job and the last craft to leave the job.
The Construction Craft Laborer Apprenticeship program consists of 4,000 hours of on the job experience and a minimum of 320 hours off the job related training before being promoted to Journeyperson. Wages begin between 60% and 80% of Journeyperson scale and may increase between 5% and 10% each 1000 hours of work completed if all of the program requirements are met.
Training for apprentices registered with a Local union hall is free as is free room and board while attending courses.
To register for an apprenticeship program contact a local union hall or training center in your area. Please see Regional Map (Add hyperlink to contact to Affiliates page) for contacts and phone numbers of the locations near you. Check out the Training link for more information on training facilities within the Northwest Region.
Depending on the availability of work and on local training schedules, it can take an individual from 2 to 4 years to complete the apprenticeship. A core curriculum consisting of basic construction skills such as blueprint reading, the correct use of tools and equipment, and knowledge of safety and health procedures comprises the first 200 hours. The remainder of the curriculum consists of specialized skills training in three of the largest segments of the construction industry: Building construction, heavy/highway construction, and environmental remediation (cleaning up debris, landscaping, and restoring the environment to its original state). Workers who use dangerous equipment or handle toxic chemicals usually receive specialized training in safety awareness and procedures. Apprentices must complete a minimum 144 hours of classroom work each year.