Apprenticeship Program

Overview

Photo of a worker carrying a ladder up a flight of stairsThe VCU Facilities Management Department (FMD) Apprenticeship Program provides individuals interested in pursuing a career as a skilled tradesman with the opportunity to participate in a four-year program and receive structured, on-the-job training, technical education and classroom instruction. Apprentices will learn about applicable codes, safety rules, regulations and procedures; how to properly use tools, read and interpret documentation, and troubleshoot; and gain teamwork and communication skills. This includes working with licensed journeymen, mentors, supervisors and other key employees to receive the skills and knowledge in the trade of interest.

The program offers apprenticeship opportunities for electricians, HVAC technicians, plumbers and steamfitters. Recruitments for the skilled trades positions will vary annually based on the business needs of FMD. Program opportunities are posted on the VCU employment website as positions become available. 

Apprentices will be hired as full-time university and academic professional employees with a salary and benefits. 

FMD covers the cost of training, including classes and required books, for apprentices. 

Current opportunities

Visit the VCU employment website for a list of current apprenticeship trade opportunities, if any.

Opportunities will be posted as they become available. 

view opportunities

Requirements

Applicants must meet the following requirements to be considered for the program:

  • Meet the minimum requirements for the trade they are applying for
  • Have a high school diploma or General Education Development certificate before they begin employment
  • Be at least 18 years of age by the apprenticeship start date

Applicants are not required to have previous formal trade experience. However, any applicant with trade experience should note their experience in the application due to the competitive nature of the recruitment process.

Timeline

  • October: Advertisement and recruitment for the Apprenticeship Program begins and is advertised for two weeks.
  • November: Interviews begin.
  • December: Interviews conclude.
  • January: New apprentices begin work. 
  • September: Related classroom instruction begins.

*Please note that this timeline is subject to change.

Curriculum 

Classroom instruction 

Apprentices are required to complete over 400 hours of related classroom instruction to learn technical, workforce and academic competencies applicable to their trade. Apprentices will take one or two class(es) per semester, depending on the institution's requirement, for a total of six to eight classes to be completed over the course of four years. Classes are offered through Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. 

Apprentices are required to regularly attend classes, complete assignments and pass the class with a minimum C average grade. Apprentices are subject to the rules and policies of the institutions they attend. 

On-the-job training 

Apprentices are also required to complete 8,000 hours of on-the-job training as designated by the U.S. Department of Labor and Industry with licensed journeymen, mentors and supervisors at VCU. This training is developed through mapping the skills and knowledge that the apprentice must learn over the course of the program to excel in the job.

Evaluation

Throughout the program, apprentices are evaluated for their classroom instruction and on-the-job reports. The Apprenticeship Program standards govern all matters related to the program and the apprentices' participation in the program.

Resources