Apprenticeship FAQs

What is an apprenticeship program?
Apprenticeship is post-secondary education like a college or university. But there’s a big difference. Apprentices learn only a portion of their skills in a traditional classroom. They receive most of their training on the job, while working for an employer who pays a good wage. The employment is the primary requirement for an apprenticeship – a job must exist in order for the apprentice to be trained. The classroom instruction is provided through Local 400’s training centers in Kaukauna and Fond du Lac. The apprenticeship is currently a five (5) year program.

Do you help me find a job or provide listings?
Yes. After completing and submitting the Pathways to the Pipe Trades Application, your name will be entered into a database that our signatory contractors will have access to.  They will be able to review the applicants and possibly contact you with pre-apprentice or metal trades employment opportunities.  These are entry-level positions that will allow the contractor to see if you are a good fit for an apprenticeship.

What qualifications do I need to become an apprentice?

  1. Must be at least 18 year of age, unless a high school graduate at age 17.
  2. Must complete an apprenticeship application form (see below) and return it with the following:
    • A high school diploma and transcript or high school equivalency (HSED) certificate and official report of test results
    • Military transfer of discharge Form DD-214 or DD-2384, if applicable
    • Valid driver’s license
  3. Successfully complete and pass a required math, algebra and reading test.
  4. Applicants may be required to obtain a doctor’s certificate of physical fitness for the trade at the time of placement.
  5. Applicant will be required to successfully pass a drug test before being offered an apprenticeship contract.

What happens when I become a registered apprentice?
Once a contractor has agreed to sponsor you as an apprentice, you will sign a legal document called an Apprentice Contract. The parties to the Contract are you, your apprenticeship sponsor and the State of Wisconsin. This identifies responsibilities and obligations of each party to the Apprentice Contract. You will be on a 12-month probationary period with the contractor. As an apprentice, you will work under the direction of a journeyman on the job site.

What is my cost for apprenticeship training?
Minimal. There will be a one-time charge for books and supplies at beginning of your apprenticeship. In most apprenticeships, you will attend paid-related training at Local 400’s Training Center once every other week (you are paid wages to be in day school) for four years. You will also have unpaid-related classes (night school) that you will be required to take for your trade. A list and schedule for the unpaid-related classes will be provided. Tuition at the training center is free.

Can my current employer participate in apprenticeship training?
Yes, providing the occupation and your employer meet all eligibility requirements.

Ready to Apply?
Click Here to download and complete the Pathways to Pipe Trades Application (Note: works best in Internet Explorer; otherwise in Google Chrome, you need to click on the “download” button at the top right of your screen in order to use the “Submit by E-Mail” button).

You can also contact Ashley Thompson in UA 400’s Training Department for more information at (920) 462-0408.