Before we begin discussing plastering apprenticeships I would first like to give you a brief description of what exactly a plasterer is. A plasterer is a skilled worker in the construction industry and is ideally suited to those who love working with their hands and can carry out tasks accurately.
What a plasterer does is they apply all sorts of different kinds of plaster to locations including interior walls and ceilings, making the surfaces ready for decorating. Plasterers also apply coatings to outside walls by using cement and sand render and also pebble dash.
A plaster does require a good knowledge of maths in order to work out just how much plaster they are going to need to complete a job. Plasterers also should be physically fit as it really is a demanding job, they must also be able to work in a team.
Plasterers like most of the trades within the construction industry are always in high demand and the reason for this is that all over the UK and indeed the world, we are in desperate need of skilled workers, there just simply aren’t enough of them to go around.
Remember once you qualify to become a plasterer you can work for a team or you have the option of going self employed and working for yourself, also if you want to in the future you could take your skills all over the world to work in countries like Canada, Australia and New Zealand for instance.
Well now you know exactly what a plasterer does in their working life, so let’s crack on and go deeper into how to enter into the plastering trade via an apprenticeship scheme.
Why are apprenticeships so good?
Apprenticeship schemes are an excellent way into the construction industry and in this case the plastering trade. You are trained up by an expert who may have been working as a plasterer for many years, just imagine the skills and knowledge they would have gained throughout their working lives and all this will be passed down to you. Ideally apprenticeships are usually for those who are just out of school and are looking to enter into the construction industry. It will usually take between 2 and 4 years to be trained up so that you meet with the industry standards at that time. You’ll be taught all the theory as well as the practical which will be completed as you’re out and about working with your boss.
You should really value this time as an apprentice as it’s an opportunity not given to many, there are just so many benefits that come with being trained up this way including meeting and greeting people within the construction industry for example you’ll be meeting with tradesmen, construction workers and suppliers, and they will get to know you and potentially in the future when you too are a qualified plasterer they may be able to help with getting your business off the ground. Not everyone training to become a plasterer either training at a local college or indeed a training centre will get the chance to meet with people like this, so already you are ahead of the others.
Apprenticeships are divided between theory lessons and practical the practical obviously takes place when you’re carrying out plastering jobs with your boss and the theory side of training takes place at your local college or training centre.
Don’t forget you earn as an apprentice and are entitled to holidays too!
Yes you read right you do earn a good wage as an apprentice and are fully entitled to holidays. As an apprentice you are fully entitled to at least the minimum wage which is £2.73 an hour, to get this amount you have to be between 16 and 18 years of age and also if you’re aged 19 or over and are currently in your first year of training. Anything above these figures will largely be down to who you are being trained up by and any extras they are willing to offer you.
These figures are paid for the hours you are working, which is at least 30 hours a week for apprentices and also for any other training which is part of the overall apprenticeship scheme. This training is usually carried out once a week.
Regarding holidays you are fully entitled to have at least 20 paid holiday days a year and also bank holidays too!
Sounds good, how do I succeed in getting on an apprenticeship scheme?
Unfortunately that’s the tricky part apprenticeships are in such high demand that there just aren’t enough available spaces to go around. There are a limited number of spaces allocated to apprenticeships each year and the competition is as you can imagine really fierce, everyone wanting to enter into the construction industry at a young age goes for apprenticeship schemes.
Apprenticeships are best suited for those aged between 16 and 24 anything over these ages and you may find yourself having a hard time.
You don’t need to have any formal qualifications to apply for an apprenticeship but you must have normal colour vision to get on an apprenticeship scheme.
So I know it sounds a bit grim if you’re over the age of 24 but remember that it may be hard but it’s not impossible it really is worth a go. Try phoning up some local plasterers or ones further afield from where you are if you don’t mind travelling and ask them whether they were planning on taking on apprentices this year and if not they may have another plasterer in mind who they know is taking on. It really is worth a go, you may find yourself in a happy situation.
What happens if I’m not accepted?
The first thing to do is not to give yourself a hard time and get disheartened over it, yes it’s a great route into the plastering industry but it’s not the only route there are many more fantastic ways to becoming a plasterer so don’t give up yet, competition is fierce and there only a few spaces each year, you did your best at trying and that’s all that counts.
Training centres a great option when entering into the construction industry as they allow you to really get hands on with your chosen trade, again your training is split between theory lessons which take place in the classroom and the practical sides of your training takes place in the workshops, where you really get to experience what a plasterer does in their working day. They are found all over the UK so you’re bound to have one close to home. Your local college will also have plastering courses available. So as you can see there are many other ways into the plastering industry and not getting on an apprenticeship scheme isn’t the end of the world so keep on trying.
If you need lots more information, try these!
If you require more information on how to become an apprentice the government has a free “National Apprenticeship Helpline” which will provide you with lots more info and also hints and tips give them a call on 08000150600
There is also a website that’s available too for more info and you can request an information pack. Visit www.apprenticeships.org.uk
Right then, that’s me finished. Honestly, I really hope you’ve gained a lot more information on apprenticeships it really is a great route into the construction industry with many fantastic benefits to you, however like I said earlier competition is fierce and there are only a limited amount of spaces allocated each year.
So don’t get too down if you are unsuccessful, the main thing is you tried, and as you can see there are other great alternatives out there. So let me wish you good luck in your quest at gaining an apprenticeship scheme, if you are successful please enjoy this special time it really is a fantastic opportunity to treasure. Good luck!