Students who choose the Apprenticeship Pathway must submit an acceptance letter as evidence of their plan to meet the Learn.Plan.Succeed. graduation requirement.
Apprenticeship programs combine on-the-job training and related classroom instruction under the supervision of a journey-level craft person or trade professional. Different industries offer apprenticeship programs, but according the the US Department of Labor, they all tend to have these characteristics:
- Employers are in charge of the program
- On-the-job training
- Job-related instruction
- Wages and raises as skills increase
- National industry-recognized credentials
Types of Apprenticeship Opportunities
Industries that typically offer apprenticeship programs include:
- Health care
- Information technology
How to Pursue This Pathway
Every apprenticeship program has a “sponsor.” Sponsors are responsible for the overall administration and operation of the apprenticeship program. Apprentice program sponsors can be a person, association, committee, or organization. Examples include:
- Employers—a single business or a consortium of businesses
- Union and non-union workplaces
- Workforce intermediaries (i.e., labor organizations)
- Community colleges
- Community-based organizations
Application requirements differ by program. Applicants must be at least 16 years old, but most apprenticeship programs require applicants to be at least 18 years old. For more information, please review the Apprenticeship Toolkit.
The length of an apprenticeship varies by occupation and program, typically ranging from one to six years. For more information, please review the Apprenticeship Toolkit.
Upon completion of the program, the U.S. Department of Labor awards apprentices with national, industry-recognized credentials. For more information, please review the Apprenticeship Toolkit.
If an apprenticeship is a postsecondary option that interests you, consider taking the next steps:
- Explore apprenticeships
Meet with your counselor, teachers, family members and other advisors to decide if an apprenticeship is right for you.
- Find an apprenticeship
Search for opportunities using Apprenticeship Finder or the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) website. Contact the employer or the program sponsor for more information.
- Submit an application
Apply for an apprenticeship directly with the employer or program sponsor. Ask your school counselor and use other CPS career planning resources for help filling out applications, writing a resume and cover letter, and preparing for interviews.
- Explore Programs at City Colleges of Chicago
- Apprenticeship Checklist
Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES)
Overview of how to become an apprentice and list of Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) Apprenticeship Information Centers where you can apply for programs.
- How to Become an Apprentice - US Department of Labor
Illinois Apprenticeship Training Programs
Information about apprenticeship training programs offered by community colleges throughout the state, published by the Illinois Department of Employment Security.
Apprenticeship opportunities with Illinois Skilled Trade Labor Unions
Explore apprenticeship opportunities by trade and labor union.
Search for apprenticeship opportunities that are available in Illinois.
Search and apply for apprenticeships nationwide.
- Apprenticeships at City Colleges of Chicago
Search nationwide for apprenticeships for youth ages 16-24.
Explore apprenticeships and opportunities for women to enter the construction trades in Chicago.
Learn more about building and construction trades in Chicago.
Construction Industry Service Corporation (CISCO)
Comprehensive guides to Illinois apprenticeship opportunities in the construction industry.
- Illinois Skilled Labor Trade Unions
Explore free or low-cost training and certification programs that can lead to rewarding employment.
- On the Job Training - Job Corp
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