Apprenticeships | Northcentral Technical College


Apprenticeships are available within the Construction, Industrial, and Service trades. Please click on the blue links below of the trade you are interested in, you will find application and contact information.


Apprenticeship is on-the-job training. The apprentice (person in training) works with a journeyman (the skilled craftsman) for a specified number of years in order to become a skilled worker. A State of Wisconsin Apprenticeship Program involves four major groups working hand in hand. The first is the employer who offers on-the-job training.  The second is the apprentice who agrees to work for the employer. The third group is the local technical college, whose only responsibility is to offer the related instruction/theory training portion for apprenticeship programs. The State of Wisconsin, Department of Workforce Development, Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards is the fourth group. Their major responsibility is to coordinate and monitor various aspects of apprenticeship programs.
Apprenticeship programs are legally constituted cooperative effort programs of education set up under the laws of the State of Wisconsin in such a way that the employer and the apprentice are treated fairly under a contractual agreement called an INDENTURE which varies in length from two to five years.
Each trade has a different set of selection and application procedures for their geographic jurisdiction.  Within the construction trades, the advisory committees determine such things as selection procedure requirements and application process.
Any persons wishing to participate in an apprenticeship program must complete the application process with the appropriate apprenticeship committee, be an approved apprentice, and be indentured BEFORE attending classes at the local technical college.
With the industrial trades, individuals interested in the apprenticeship program must apply with the various companies and corporations in this area. Usually, each company determines and implements their own minimum qualification requirements for apprentices.
The chance of becoming a highly skilled worker, in the various trades, is at a premium even in times of full employment. Opportunities for participation in apprenticeships are very competitive. Often the best chance to obtain an apprenticeship is to find an employer willing to hire you and then persuade them to provide skilled training. Some industrial plants have a bargaining agreement with a union which makes apprenticeships open only to workers already employed in their current workforce.
Almost every trade requires that the individual be a high school graduate or must have completed their Certificate of General Education Development (GED) or High School Equivalency Diploma (HSED). In addition, some of the trades also have specific requirements.

Industrial and construction employers believe that their apprentices need a solid math and reading foundation.

The College Prep Center at Northcentral Technical College is available to help students update their skills so they can be prepared for their academic classes. In the College Prep Center, instructors work with students in a lab environment to improve their reading, writing, and math skills. This support is available without the cost of tuition. The College Prep Center at the Wausau campus is open day and evening hours during the week and Saturday morning. See the NTC website for the College Prep Center site schedule.

Apprentice applicants, who wish to develop their math and reading skills, can take the TABE test, and the DAT (Differential Aptitude Test) for mechanical and special relations.  The tests are “broken down” into the various categories for each subject. The test results serve as a good indicator of what specific areas the student needs to study in order to improve their knowledge level.
After the apprentice applicant secures an employer, the individual is indentured through the State of Wisconsin, Department of Workforce Development, Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards. An indenture is similar to a contract which both the apprentice and employer sign. This document contains pertinent information such as the indenture date and number of years required to complete the apprenticeship program. Also noted within the indenture document are the number of specific work hours required in each phase of the trade, number of day school hours, and the evening school requirements. Wage scale information is also included. By signing the indenture, the apprentice agrees to work for the employer and the employer agrees to train the individual in the various aspects of the trade. Four copies of the indenture are completed and distributed to.
  • Employer
  • Apprentice
  • Technical College
  • Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards
The company that employs you must:
  • Indenture you as an apprentice
  • Provide adequate and safe facilities for your on-the-job training
  • Assign qualified personnel to teach you the job
  • Supervise you during your indenture
  • Pay you wages for the time spent in related instruction
As an apprentice, you must:
  • Sign a contract indenture
  • Be a reliable and responsible employee
  • Work diligently throughout the duration of your apprenticeship and carefully complete assignments from your supervisor
  • Promptly complete all related instruction assignments, lessons, and tests as required by your classroom instructor
  • Provide adequate facilities and professional instructors to teach a well-rounded understanding of trade theories and techniques for the required hours of the indenture
  • Cooperate and work with the Wisconsin Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards and the respective advisory committees
When indenture, the individual will begin working for the employer on a full-time basis. The employer must release the apprentice from the work site on each scheduled date that related theory classes are in session. Typically, apprentices attend school once every two weeks for an eight (8) hour session.  With this format, apprentices attend related theory approximately twice a month on the day of the week specifically scheduled for their trade.
The employer pays the apprentice an hourly wage during the training program which is based on a percentage of the journey level skilled wage rate. As the individual progresses through the apprenticeship program, the salary tends to be increased at six (6) month intervals.
The recruitment, selection, employment, and training of apprentices during their apprenticeship shall be without discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, or sex, age, creed, handicap, marital status, ancestry, sexual orientation, arrest record, conviction record, or membership in the military forces of the United States or this state. The sponsor will take affirmative action to provide equal employment opportunity in apprenticeship and will operate the apprenticeship program as required under Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulation of the State of Wisconsin.


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