Whether you’re a recent high school graduate questioning whether college is the right next move, unexpectedly out of a job, or just looking for a career change and wanting to do something more, you may discover that a trade apprenticeship program, sponsored by Encore Fire Protection, is exactly what you are looking for.
Why pick fire protection over an apprenticeship in another trade? While the apprenticeship requirements are largely the same, the net result is quite different. What sets a career in fire protection apart, first and foremost, is that the fire alarm, sprinkler and suppression systems we work on literally protect life and property. On top of that, it’s code-driven. The installation and on-going maintenance requirements are legally established and only getting more strict as time goes on. So the skilled workers who are able to install and service these crucial pieces of life saving equipment will forever be in high demand.
But What Is an Apprenticeship?
People have been learning trades through apprenticeships for over 150 years. In the old days, the apprentice performed low-level tasks while learning the ins-and-outs of the trade. After several years, the apprentice might graduate to journeyman status–qualified and licensed to practice the trade without supervision.
Over the years, different states have adopted different requirements, but in general, the apprentices’ path has evolved to include a combination of formal, on the job training and either online or in-classroom training. And for those who are committed to keeping up with studies, they can achieve the coveted journeyman status in as little as one year for a chosen focus on suppression systems, two-years for a focus in low voltage electrical, or four years to obtain a license for fire alarm or sprinkler work.
The Benefits of an Encore Fire Protection Apprenticeship
An apprenticeship is not easy. At a minimum, it’s four years, starting from the bottom. But during that time, you can expect:
- Hands-on training
- Development of leadership skills needed to run a job and lead a team
- Variety—often a different worksite, a different team, and a different challenge every week.
- Benefits like health, dental, vision, and 401(k)
- Fitness! Some say being on a job-site is like getting paid to work out
- Utilize your creative problem solving skills
- Appealing hours for a morning person, avoiding miserable rush hours
- Impact. The work you do will truly help people by making the places they live and work safe
At the end of an apprenticeship with Encore, you can expect to earn and aim for benefits like:
- Potential for high-pay earnings in a stable industry with opportunity to grow
- A company vehicle and cell phone
- Flexible hours
- Paid time off
- Ongoing training and opportunities for additional certification
- An exclusive, professional designation that allows you to do work that most others can’t
There Isn’t Only One Path to Success.
College is not for everyone and fortunately it’s no longer considered the only path to a successful career. Some evidence suggests that too many people are actually going to college, with more graduates than the white-collar job market can handle. Young people are suffering the consequences in the form of underemployment or even unemployment.
Look at the numbers:
- 34% of college graduates in 2017 were "underemployed," meaning they took jobs beneath the expected qualifications of their degree
- In 2018, that number jumped to 43%
- Meanwhile, on the strength of outdated earning expectations, students saddled themselves with an average of $37,000 in debt
You may have older friends or siblings who have experienced difficulty securing a job post-graduation, ended up taking something outside their field or study, or are choosing to study longer so that their qualifications have a better chance of standing out. Consider the barriers that college graduates face, and the benefits that alternative options for employment may provide.
It takes hard work and determination to graduate from an apprenticeship program, but those who can stick with it can go on to thriving, high-paying careers. Not only is the destination appealing, but so is the journey. Consider this:
Earn While You Learn
Forget racking up thousands in student loans before you've earned a dime. Apprentices get paid an hourly wage in-line with earned experience. The required training that apprentices must complete to sit for their license are paid hours, and in some states, pay raises are guaranteed as you meet specific milestones. Fast forward to “graduation;” a licensed technician can expect to start at an hourly rate that equates anywhere from $50,000 - $80,000 per year depending on location and the chosen area of focus. This can actually far exceed the average starting salary of a college grad – minus all the debt!
Success is Within Reach
Here's a sobering statistic: over 2.7 million students graduate with a bachelor’s or master’s degree every year. That's a lot of people competing for a shrinking pool of jobs as office work moves to India, the Philippines, and Latin America. Meanwhile, only 50,000 people completed an apprenticeship each year. That's a lot fewer people fulfilling the growing need for high-paid technicians in an industry that has officially been designated essential.
Training That Suits the Way You Learn
If you’re mechanically inclined, hands-on learning can be far more stimulating than sitting behind a desk listening. If you’ve ever struggled to understand a task until you did it, an apprenticeship could fit your learning style. While some apprenticeships may require a small amount of testing and classroom time, compared to a traditional college degree, the majority of learning is done by doing. On top of that, you’ll learn hands-on from the journeyman who you’re paired with. Different from an office job where you’ll have a boss, a journeyman/apprenticeship relationship is much more akin to mentor/mentee than boss/subordinate.
Office work is not for everyone. Today, young people have many more options. One of those options is a lucrative, meaningful career as a technician with Encore Fire Protection. If you're ready to start your career, learn a new way to earn money, or get your career on track and learn valuable skills from day one, apply for an Encore Fire Protection apprenticeship today.
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