Carpenters are skilled tradespeople who work with wood, assembling and constructing everything from furniture to houses. They use tools like saws, hammers, nails and screws to build structures that last for decades.
If this sounds like a career for you, then take carpenter training in Indiana. You’re venturing for an exciting new opportunity with plenty of room for growth and job opportunities as well.
To do this, you can apply for an apprenticeship program to become a carpenter. There are carpenter unions in Indiana that once in a while, open vacancies for aspiring apprentices like you. If you're looking for a union or organization that offers an apprenticeship program, check out the list below. Keep in mind that apprenticeships usually last three or four years before they lead up to full certification as a carpenter and earn the journeyman level.
While you may think that the best way to become a carpenter is to apprentice with someone who has already been doing carpentry for years. However, there are many other ways that you can get into this field without having any previous experience. For example:
- Some community colleges offer classes in carpentry and other construction trades.
- You can research trade schools and universities in your area by visiting their websites or talking to admissions officers about what they have to offer.
Taking a course offered by a community college or university will enable you to earn a certificate or degree.
If you would like to know more about your options, contact one of the schools below, and see what they can offer.
Carpenter Training Schools and Unions in Indiana
- IKO Regional Council of Carpenters (UBC)
771 Greenwood Springs Drive, Greenwood, IN 46143
Phone: (219) 947-3348, Fax: (219) 947-1889
- Merrillville Campus IKORCC JATF (UBC)
1565 E 70th Ct. Merrillville, IN, 46410, US
Phone: (219) 947-3348, Fax: (219) 947-1889
- Warsaw Campus IKORCC JATF (UBC)
1095 Mariners Dr., Warsaw, IN, 46582
Phone: (574) 267-5264, Fax: (574) 269-1464
- Lafayette IKORCC JATF (UBC)
2953 S Creasy Ln., Lafayette, IN, 47905, US
Phone: (765) 447-5959, Fax: (765) 447-7676
- United Brotherhood of Carpenters
711 Greenwood Springs Drive, Greenwood, IN, 46143
Phone: (317) 807-1116, Fax: (317) 807-1131
- Associated Builders and Contractors
East Point Business Center, 2701 Industrial Parkway, Suite 190, Elkhart, IN 46516
4201 Parnell Avenue, Fort Wayne, IN 46805
(800) 428-6215 or (260) 441-9897
2841 Concord Rd. Suite A, Lafayette, IN 47909
(877) 222-0520, (765) 357-3201
- Indiana County Technology Center
441 Hamill Road, Indiana, PA 15701
Phone: (724) 349-6700
Who Can Be an Apprentice Carpenter?
In order to become a carpenter, one must be an apprentice for 3-4 years and pass the exams. The apprenticeship can be done with a union or without. Becoming a carpenter is not easy and requires dedication and hard work.
The very minimum level of education you must attain in order to become an apprentice carpenter is high school, if you don’t have this qualification, GED can be a substitute.
You must be at least 18 years old (although some states have raised their minimum age). You also need to be able to read blueprints or drawings that show where materials go.
Since the nature of the job is physically demanding, you must be in good shape and in good health condition.
Finally, you must be willing to work hard as apprentices usually put in long hours during the summer months when construction booms.
Since applying for the apprenticeship is like applying for a job, you must pass the interview that happens during the latter part of the hiring process.
Is Previous Experience Required to Enter an Apprenticeship Program?
The question on most people's minds is "Do I need previous experience?" Many unions and companies in this industry will accept new applicants who have no prior carpentry knowledge or work history but they'll require more than just a willingness to learn.
There are many aspects of carpentry that can only be learned through on-the-job training, so previous experience working with tools is necessary but there are some things you should know before starting.
Carpentry is an extremely skilled trade that requires years of experience to perfect. Before you apply for an apprenticeship program, be sure to do your research and make sure the company offers a training program for beginners.
Cost of Joining Carpenter Apprenticeship Program
The cost of joining an apprenticeship program is a question many carpenters ask. The answer is there is no cost involved in joining the program, however, there are membership fees that applicants have to pay, and when joining a union, monthly dues are the fees you have to pay.
For example, if you wanted to join a union apprenticeship program like the United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC), you would have to pay $18 monthly as membership dues. In addition, UBC offers their members immediate placement and career training opportunities which makes this option one that may be worth exploring further.
You may pay extra if you join another organization as an apprentice. The cost of joining a carpenter apprenticeship program is usually minimal, which would provide you with the necessary training and tools needed for your trade. You will be provided with work clothes, protective equipment, and safety gear as well.
In most cases employers cover this initiation fee after successful completion of the apprenticeship program; or if you’re joining UBC, the initiation has been waived.
Being a Union Has a Good Advantage
I was a carpenter and I had been working in the union for over six years. In my experience, there are many benefits to being a union member. Among them is having access to resources that can help us make sure we're doing our jobs safely and efficiently. There's also the opportunity for us to network with other members at conferences or meetings, which can really help build up our skillset as well as offer new perspectives on how we do things.
Not only does joining a union gives you these great benefits - it also provides job security. If your company ever goes out of business because of economic conditions, then you'll have protection through unemployment insurance, disability insurance, and pension plans until you find another job elsewhere.
NCCER Certification is What You Need to Be Nationally-Recognized
NCCER certification is one of many ways that an individual can develop themselves into a skilled tradesperson; whether they're just getting started or have years of experience under their belt, NCCER offers various tests and certifications that will allow them to achieve their goals.
NCCER is a nationally recognized credential that carpenters can earn to demonstrate their skills in the field. The exam covers topics such as, safety knowledge, carpentry math and measurements, layout and cutting of materials.
Carpenters can take this exam by going through a training program or testing center near them. To become NCCER certified, you must pass both the written and performance assessments.
Upon successful taking the exam, your record will be put into the national registry and become part of the portable record which means your credentials can be checked online by a hiring manager or sponsoring contractor.
For you to prepare for the exam, there are training centers that offer NCCER training courses.
Salary of Carpenters in Indiana
How Much Does A Carpenter Make in Indiana? Carpenters can earn an average of $60,198 per year in this state but the range typically falls between $52,022 and $69,705. These numbers are pulled out from the July 25, 2023 report of Salary.com. In Ohio, the neighboring state, the salary is almost the same.
Factors like location and experience will play a role in determining what they earn on top of their base salary. For example, someone with more than 15 years experience as a carpenter could potentially be earning up to $80,000 annually while somebody who is just starting out might only be making around $48,000 per year which isn't too shabby considering their work doesn't require any formal education or training after high school.
Being a carpenter is just as good as being a CEO. It's not like they're making Ikea furniture- these people are building the frames that keep our homes standing and some of them play with power tools for a living.
To Make a Finalization
If you find that carpentry is the right career for you, then take this opportunity, take the carpenter training in Indiana or apply for an apprenticeship program. Whether it’s through a vocational school in your area or by taking one of our online courses, start on the journey now and see where it takes you!
Carpentry can be a lifelong profession with endless opportunities to learn new skills and explore different job sectors. We wish you good luck on your career!