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How to Be an Apprentice

An apprenticeship is a structured method of training, which develops workers who have a wide range of skills within a craft.

The system of apprenticeship includes specified hours of on-the-job training and classroom-related instruction or other approved supplemental training. Apprenticeships usually range from one to five years, depending on the occupational trade. The on-the-job training is under the supervision of a skilled and seasoned journey worker. Each component reinforces the other and produces a journey worker, who has thoroughly learned a craft  and can adjust to technological change in a variety of jobs.

An apprenticeship is not just a job, it is a career. Graduates, who successfully complete their apprenticeship training, receive nationally recognized completion certificates. In this regard, an apprenticeship is considered "the other four (4) year degree." In addition, apprentices earn a salary while learning their craft.


Qualifications for Apprenticeship

Although there are variations among the crafts, general qualifications for apprenticeship selection are as follows:

  • Age 18 and above and physically able to do the work of the trade.
  • High School Diploma or General Education Diploma (GED) is required for most trades.
  • Some apprenticeship programs require the administering of a general aptitude test with a qualifying score for the specific trade.
  • Transportation is required for most apprenticeship programs, particularly in the construction field, due to the mobility of the industry.

In many cases, employers grant qualified applicants credit toward their apprenticeship training for prior experience in the trade.


Contact Information

For more information on apprenticeship training and how to apply, you can contact the DC Office of Apprenticeship, Information and Training at (202) 698-5099.

You may also visit or contact any of the following Department of Employment Services' American Job Centers that are available to assist you Monday through Friday at the hours indicated for the particular center.

Career Centers Location Hours of Operation Contact Information
American Job Center - Headquarters 4058 Minnesota Avenue, NE Washington, DC 20019 Monday - Friday  
8:30 am - 4 pm

Main: (202) 724-2337
Fax: (202) 543-6794

American Job Center - Northeast

CCDC - Bertie Backus Campus 5171 South Dakota Avenue, NE Washington, DC 20017

Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4 pm 

Main: (202) 576-3092
TTY: (202) 576-3102
Fax: (202) 576-3103

American Job Center - Northwest Frank D. Reeves Municipal Center 200014th Street, NW 3rd Floor Washington, DC 20009 Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4 pm

Main: (202) 442-4577
TTY: (202) 481-3451
Fax: (202) 481 - 3452

American Job Center -  Southeast

3720 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, SE Washington, DC 20032

8:30 am - 4 pm

Phone: (202) 741-3922 
TTY: (202) 741-3922
Fax: (202) 481-3923

American Job Center - Southwest

CVS/Pharmacy Training Facility  4049 South Capitol Street, NW Washington, DC 20032 Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 4 pm

Main: (202) 645-4000
TTY: (202) 645-0022
Fax: (202) 645-5337

American Job Center - US Veterans Affairs 
(Veterans Only)
1722 I Street, NW Room 335 Washington, DC 20006 Monday - Friday
8:30 am - 3:30 pm

Main: (202) 530-9354
TTY: (202) 576-3262
Fax: (202) 530-9359


More Information

Service Contact: 
Office of Apprenticeship Information and Training
Contact Email: 
Contact Phone: 
(202) 698-5099
Contact Fax: 
(202) 673-6993
Contact TTY: 
Contact Suite #: 
Suite 401
Office Hours: 
Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 5 pm