I had a curious parent ask a great question in an email. I was inspired to start a FAQ category for articles and I thought i would share this one with everyone. Darren's email was as follows;
"I don't understand just how your Apprentice Path will help in my city for my 18 year old son in Texas. But Please let me know how.
My response is below;
"That is a great question and I am going to start an FAQ in your honor on the website :)
The real problem in the construction industry (and most industries) is that the culture of apprenticeship and mentoring has been lost. I am 57 years old and it seems to me that I was the last generation of carpenters that had an older experienced carpenter take me under his wing and teach me. He also kept in touch with me over the years until sadly he died in a car wreck just a few years ago. His name was Robert Frizzell Sr. and he mostly taught by actions and not words but he was the best builder I have ever know and as honest as the day is long.
I was also the last generation where our local Home Builders Association offered an apprenticeship program. I went to a vocational high school for building trades for half the day and the pother half of the day to a regular high school. After high school I attended the National Home Builders Apprenticeship Program and at the age of 19, I had my own framing crew. I always knew I wanted to be a design-build contractor and 40 years later I am enjoying doing just that. One of the areas we focus on is career planning which I will outline below.
So my goal is to help rebuild that culture, but it starts with training the new apprentices coming into the trades now. And this is not just about carpenters. It is about all of those who want to make construction their career. Your son may decide he wants to be on the design or engineering side of the industry or own his own contracting business. This transcends state lines and we can use current technology accomplish goal.
We focus on five main areas each month in the 12 month program;
1. History and Traditions
2. Basic Skills Training
3. Design and Technology
4. Career Planning
5. Safety and Education
Each month the apprentices have assignments each week based on these areas of focus. It is true that these things are best learned on the job but the problem is, especially in the residential market, there is no focus on training younger people coming into the trades. They are forced to do the grunt work, which is fine, they have to put in their time, but during this time of "paying their due to the industry" we can also teach them and inspire them. Give them the light at the end of the tunnel which is freedom.
The freedom comes from education and mentoring. I want to help each apprentice understand how to get the education and experience they need to start their own business or be an industry leader so that down the road, they can in turn mentor a new apprentice also. That is the cycle that has been lost.
Anyway, sorry for the long response but you sparked something in me early this morning when I read your email. It made me realize, not all can see what I am trying to do. The Apprentice Path is free for apprentices so I hope you (and he) will give it a chance. I can set up a user profile for him if he wants. The program is still in development but I have three months of the 12 months ready to go if he wants to give it a try.
Artisan School of Construction and Philosophy
"Skill makes you a craftsman, philosophy makes you an artisan"
I know my response was lengthy but this effort is in its infancy and much explanation is required I think. If you have questions, contact me
and I will share the answer in this FAQ category blog. Thanks! ~ArtisanTony