Pre-apprenticeship programs first step in preparing people for trade careers

Pre-apprenticeship programs are educational programs that prepare people with the skills and knowledge they need to apply for a registered apprenticeship program.

Participants in these programs receive in-class and hands-on training. They can improve their literacy, math and English skills and will be trained in such work-readiness habits as showing up on time and following instructions. In addition, pre-apprenticeship participants get a head start on career-specific training.

These programs exist for quite a few blue-collar fields, including carpentry, construction, medic, pipefitter and culinary trades. They are sponsored by a variety of nonprofit organizations, unions and community colleges. The community college programs require tuition, but scholarships may be available, and some pre-apprenticeship programs are covered by grants.

Currently there is no national directory of programs that we know of, although several organizations have tried to create one.

The best way to find out about a pre-apprenticeship program in your area is to contact your local American Job Center (formerly known as One-Stop Career Center).