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Welcome to the latest in our Be Ambitious series. Today
we're hitting the nail on the head with a look at at the world of
carpentry and the job opportunities it has to offer.
Wood is one of man's oldest building materials, making carpentry one
of the oldest trades in the world. And we're talking really
old – like about 7,000 years ago (Early Neolithic Period), according
to archaeological evidence of the trade.
Carpentry involves a lot of physical work such as climbing ladders,
heavy lifting and standing for long periods, so you'll need to be in
fairly good physical condition. Carpentry is also very much about
precision and symmetry, so manual dexterity and attention to detail is
essential. You'll also need the ability to read blueprints, lay out
projects and assemble different materials. Good maths and
problem-solving skills will help you out here.
Carpentry apprenticeships are out there and can be found if you're
willing to do the work looking for them. This can be through
organisations such as the Master Builders
Association or the Australian
Apprenticeship Support Network, which administers apprenticeship
programs throughout the building and construction industry, or by
contacting building companies yourself and asking if they'd be willing
to take you on as an apprentice.
Your chances of successfully scoring a carpentry apprenticeship will
be increased if you've signed up for some formal qualifications. TAFE
III in Carpentry is a good starting point as it's designed
specifically for apprentices in the carpentry trade. While it has no
educational entry requirements, you will need to first successfully
complete the WHS
Induction Training (White Card), which is mandatory for entry to
a construction site. As with many of the manual trades, safe work
practices comprise an important part of the training, often considered
equally important as the "nuts and bolts" of the trade itself.
Did you know you can begin your TAFE studies while you're
still at school? This is through the TVET
program. TVET stands for "TAFE-delivered vocational education
and training", and construction is an eligible industry area. It
means you can learn valuable workplace skills and gain hands-on
experience while you're still at school, increasing your prospects of employment.
The TVET program has been developed by the Board of Studies and can
count towards your HSC. Upon completion of your TVET course, you'll be
awarded a Certificate
I in Construction qualification, which is nationally accredited
and recognised. If you're interested in starting your training while
still at school, speak to a career advisor either at your school or your nearest TAFE NSW college.
Other pre-apprenticeship pathways include School Based Apprenticeships & Traineeships.
You may enrol in the Certificate
II in Construction Pathways which equips you with a range of
trade skills in this 'trade tester' qualification. Completion of this
course may also give you eligibility for Recognition
of Prior Learning (RPL) for most building
trade courses and careers.
Being a carpenter can be a very rewarding trade. Your work
environment can change from project to project, which keeps it
interesting and varied, and your skills and knowledge will always be
in demand. Best of all, you never know where your trade will take you.
Actor Harrison Ford was originally trained as a carpenter, and only
got his big break in movies when he was hired to build cabinets for
director George Lucas. Now there's an example of your trade taking you
clear across the galaxy!
Download your free Carpentry Course Guide here.