Apprenticeship is a unique post-secondary opportunity to earn while you learn. It is a combination of 20 percent in-school training and 80 percent on-the-job work experiences under the supervision of a journeyperson.
It is a partnership between industry, educational institutions, and government. PEI has 56 designated trades under apprenticeship, which is a stepping stone to becoming a journeyperson.
Daniel Grant is a plumbing apprentice who plans to live and work on PEI. He graduated from Montague High School in 2016. He went on to take the plumbing program at Holland College Georgetown Center, and graduated in May, 2017. “I’ve always had an interest in the trades,” says Daniel.
“I just bought a house outside Montague. This is where I want to live and raise a family someday. More young people are staying on the Island to work. Contractors are saying employment in the trades is increasing on PEI. Plumbing is a job that will always be here. It’s not going away.”
In June 2017, he began an apprenticeship with Petrie Plumbing Inc. in Belfast. In January 2019, Daniel returned to Georgetown Holland College Centre for six weeks of study.
He will write his Block Three test, return to work for another year, and then write the Block Four test. He will be eligible to write his Red Seal interprovincial exam when he acquires the necessary apprenticeship hours.
“I like working for the company I am with,” says Daniel. “New home construction is just one aspect of plumbing employment on PEI. I mostly do residential plumbing, but many of my classmates are employed in commercial jobs building and renovating factories, apartment buildings, etc. From what I hear and see, the commercial plumbing sector is experiencing an increase in construction as well.
“Construction on PEI is definitely getting jobs for apprentices and keeping them employed.
“Winter construction has increased in recent years, allowing year-round employment. There is a lot of service work as well with plumbing, so there will always be work available. The wages are good, especially for PEI standards.”
“I recommend trades as a career option,” says Daniel. “When I asked my high school counsellor about employment prospects on PEI, she gave me a list of Holland College courses with high employment rates within a year of graduation, which indicated there was a good chance of finding immediate employment in the trades on PEI.”
For more information about the Apprenticeship program, contact Kenneth MacDougall at 902-888-8034, or Mark Power at 902-368-4464.