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Plumber Apprenticeship Overview

Work Description 
Plumbers install, repair and maintain the water supply, waste water treatment, drainage and gas systems in homes, commercial, and industrial buildings. Plumbers assemble, install and repair pipes, fittings, and fixtures of heating, water and drainage systems according to specifications and plumbing codes. Plumbers also install sanitary facilities such as lavatories, toilets, tubs, bathroom fixtures, showers, kitchen fixtures, drinking fountains, and laundry equipment.

Work Conditions 
Plumbing work can be indoors or outdoors in existing and newly constructed buildings, in various weather conditions and around noise, dirt and mud. The work requires physical strength and stamina with prolonged standing, lifting heavy pipes and equipment, and working in cramped, awkward or uncomfortable positions. Training in safety practices reduces the risk of dangers of falls from ladders, cuts from sharp tools, and burns from hot pipes or soldering equipment.

Topics include plumbing code, repair and service, materials, installation of fixtures and appliances, system design, trade math, safety, science, blueprint reading, and isometric drawing.

  • Five years of not less than 8,000 hours
  • Minimum of 7,428 hours on-the-job training
  • 572 hours of paid related instruction. Classes are scheduled one full day, eight hours, every two weeks during the school year. Apprentices are paid to attend these classes at the same rate of pay as hours worked on the job. Attendance is mandatory.
  • Apprentices are required to attend 260 hours of unpaid night school instruction as designated by the Committee, on their own time.
  • Apprentices are paid a percentage of the journeymen's base wage rate as established annually by the State of Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. The apprentice's wage is a percentage of the skilled rate and is divided into a pay progression. The wage at each level of the progression is a designated percentage of the skilled wage rate. Wage advances are usually given annually. Advances are based on the completion of a designated number of academic and work hours.
  • Upon completion of work and school requirements, the apprentice plumber is eligible to apply to write the State of Wisconsin journeyman plumbing exam.

Application Requirements

  • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age
  • Must be a high school graduate or have a GED/HSED
  • Must have a valid driver's license or reliable transportation
  • Must be physically able to perform trade work
  • Must have employer sponsorship & Wisconsin BAS signed contract
  • Must take the Next-Generation Accuplacer Placement test or qualifying ACT scores. Accuplacer scores must meet minimum requirements of Reading 244, Arithmetic 237, Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics (QAS) 235. ACT minimum scores of Math 15 and Reading 16 within the last five years

Applications are for the following Eau Claire Area counties: Barron, Chippewa, Clark, Dunn, Eau Claire, Pepin, Pierce, Polk, Price, Rusk, St. Croix, Taylor and the northern half of Buffalo, Jackson and Trempealeau.

Earn credit for prior learning! Do you have previous educational or work experience in the field? You could be eligible to receive credit for prior learning.

Just the Facts

16 Credit Apprenticeship

Delivery Method

Estimated Tuition, Fees, & Books: $2,587

Apprentice Application Employer Application

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Whether you're looking to continue your learning to another program or to gain continuing education credit, CVTC offers a variety of learning opportunities for students.

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Is an Apprenticeship Right for You?

CVTC's apprenticeship programs offer a comprehensive and practical approach to learning, allowing you to gain hands-on experience in your field while earning a wage. These programs blend classroom learning with on-the-job training, providing a well-rounded education that prepares you for immediate entry into your chosen career. Apprenticeships can last from one to four years, depending on the profession, ensuring you have the depth of knowledge and experience needed to excel.

Whether you're beginning your career journey, seeking to upgrade your skills in your current profession, or looking to transition into a new field, CVTC's apprenticeships offer a direct path to employment. By combining practical experience with theoretical learning, you're not just prepared for the job market; you're already part of it, making apprenticeships an invaluable step in your career development.


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