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Frequently asked questions about apprenticeship and on-the-job training (OJT) programs

Are you an employer? A veteran? A student? Or are you a worker seeking advancement, an unemployed worker or a dislocated worker seeking more information about apprenticeship and on-the-job training (OJT) programs?

What is apprenticeship?

Apprenticeship is a formal system that combines on-the-job training with related technical instruction. It is designed to produce workers who are fully competent in all aspects of a job, including: knowledge, skill and proficiency on-the-job. With apprenticeship training, there is a written contract between the apprentice and the employer, approved by and registered with the state of Minnesota, that specifies the length of the training, school hours, an outline of the skills to be learned and the wages the apprentice will receive.

Our agency helps employers tailor their own programs that provide apprentices with specific skills, training and job-related instruction to meet the company's needs.

How many different types apprenticeships are available?

More than 100 different types of apprenticeships are available. See the directory of training programs.   

What types of companies have apprenticeship programs?

A variety of types and sizes of companies have apprenticeship programs. Construction, manufacturing, health care, transportation and information technology benefit greatly from apprenticeship programs. 

Recently, apprenticeship programs have been developed for administrative support services, health support specialists, community health workers, maintenance technicians, mechatronic technicians, welders and direct support professional positions.

With few exceptions, any business that requires highly skilled employees -- from a small two-person business to the largest corporations -- can benefit from apprenticeship.

What are the requirements for entry into the apprenticeship program?

A high school diploma or G.E.D. may be required for apprentice applicants. Math, science and industrial technical courses are especially helpful in being considered for an apprenticeship.

When did Minnesota's apprenticeship program begin? How many apprentices have participated in a registered program?

Minnesota's apprenticeship program dates back to 1939. After approval by the Federal Bureau of Apprenticeship, Minnesota conducted its first Apprenticeship Advisory Council (now Apprenticeship Board) meeting Sept. 18, 1939, chaired by Dr. C.A. Prosser of the Dunwoody Institute.

Since then, more than 110,000 apprentices have been trained in Minnesota. Thousands of large and small businesses have trained them to meet company needs as well as provide highly skilled, high-wage jobs for the apprentices. 

I need more information about apprenticeship, what do I do?

Contact  Apprenticeship Minnesota: