Representatives from WVU s Facilities Management unit and Human Resources department will be holding a series of informational sessions for a new, skilled-trades apprenticeship program. The pilot program, expected to launch in early July, will provide experience and technical training for participants to develop a career in carpentry, plumbing, electrical, HVAC or general trades.

The informational sessions, open to WVU employees and the general public, are scheduled for March 15 and will be held in three locations throughout the WVU campus including:

  • 12 a.m.2 a.m., Life Sciences Building, Room G21
  • 8:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m., Coliseum, Jerry West Lounge
  • 4 p.m.-6 p.m., NRCCE building, Room 101A

Applications for the program will be available through the WVU Human Resources website at http://www.hr.wvu.edu/jobs/jb.cfm. Candidates for the program must possess a high school diploma or GED certificate and valid drivers license, but are not required to have any general trade skills or experience.

This represents an incredible opportunity for non-skilled workers to develop a bright future in high demand trades and get paid for it along the way,said Randy Hudak, director of WVU Facilities Management.The four-year apprenticeship will provide opportunities for the attainment of skills, development of knowledge and the start of a long-term career here at the University.

Hudak expects the first class to consist of six to eight members, but he would like to expand the program over time.

This program will help the University meet the growing needs of a skilled workforce within a tight labor market,Hudak said.There is a lot of interest in our success, because this is the only apprenticeship program, run by a state institution in West Virginia.

While enrolled, apprentices will be full time, benefits-eligible employees of WVU earning a pay-grade 8 wage. As the program continues and participants increase their skills and experience, their pay-grade will also increase until the completion of the program when they will be earning a pay-grade 13 wage. Upon completion they will also be classified as a trades specialist within the University and be eligible for certification by the United States Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship and certification by the State of West Virginia.

The apprenticeship program will consist of a combination of 1,600 hours of on-the-job training and 145 hours of classroom instruction and technical education.

The classroom work will focus on the basics such as Workplace Safety as well as more advanced trade specific training,Hudak said.

WVU partnered with the Monongalia County Technical Education Center (MTEC), Siemens and several other third-party providers to establish a curriculum and to help with the instruction, he added.

Trade specialist lead workers within Facilities Management will serve as mentors to help train, critique, build the skills and provide experience for the apprentices.

For more information contact the Facilities Management department at 304-293-2330 or on line athttp://www.wvu.edu~facserv/plant/.