12:01PM | 08/13/02
Member Since: 08/12/02
1 lifetime posts
I would appreciate anyones advice on how I would go about starting a career in carpentry. I am interested in learning any way possible as long as it isn't one of those distance learning courses. Do I need to go to a trade school or should I just try to find a carpenter willing to take on an apprentice? I thank you for any help that you can give me.

Mark Hammond

05:35PM | 08/13/02
Member Since: 05/09/01
246 lifetime posts
Hi Scoti,
I spent a good portion of my carpentry career as a carpentry teacher. What I will tell you sounds mixed but you know...The most straight away method is to attend a vocational trade school. There are different types in different states. For example, in Ma. you go at the high school level but in NH you go at the college level.
Even as I speak of this method I got my training on the job. A good teacher can teach you all you need to know but unless you get some real hands on you will be missing a part that is to me, invaluable. Some schools provide jobsites to work on while at other times you attend classes to get the related end of the trade.
On the job has great advantages depending again on who does the teaching and how concientious they are. OJT breaks you into some great work habits that you don't think of when you consider learning a trade. For example, getting there on time, developing a good work ethic, doing what the boss says without taking everything personal and knowing how to get along with your co-workers. Hands on has to me always been the best way to learn but we all learn differently. All in all I'd have to go with OJT, but watch out! There are some who would use you for what you can do for them and not teach what you need for yourself. Go with a contractor with a good rep and tell them up front that you want to learn. This will mean a lot to most. Best of luck......Mark Hammond
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