How to become an apprentice

Choosing a career in the skilled trades means choosing a job that is in-demand and provides good pay.

Where to start

To become an apprentice, you first need an employer who agrees to provide you with on-the-job training while you continue to work and get paid. You and your employer will enter into an agreement that must be registered with your provincial or territorial apprenticeship authority. Throughout your apprenticeship, you will receive a combination of on-the-job experience and, in most cases, attend in-class technical training, too.

Contact your province or territory to learn more about the steps you and your employer need to follow to get you registered as an apprentice.

Apprentices: Earn while you learn

As an apprentice, you earn while you learn. After completing both the in-class and on-the-job training, you can apply for your journeyperson certification or a certificate of qualification—also known as your “ticket.”

Depending on the trade, an apprentice must take between two to five years’ training before applying to become a certified journeyperson.

Labour mobility

To help make it easier for apprentices to complete their training, provinces and territories, through the Canadian Council of Directors of Apprenticeship, are working together to harmonize apprenticeship programs in 10 targeted Red Seal trades. This means apprentices in those trades will be able to move between jurisdictions to meet their training requirements and employers will have access to the skilled workers they need.

Red Seal Trades

Completing your apprenticeship in a Red Seal trade provides better job prospects, and allows you to work anywhere in Canada. It also gives you access to many of the benefits available from the Government. Obtaining your Red Seal certification allows you to work anywhere in Canada.

Apprentice opportunities

To find potential apprentice opportunities near you, visit the Job Bank.

Visit Skills Canada to learn more about careers in the skilled trades or Job Bank to find apprenticeship opportunities near you.

Apprenticeship in Quebec

In Quebec, classroom training is taken first at a CEGEP, college or training institution and is followed by on-the-job training with an employer. In the rest of Canada, apprentices start with on-the-job training, followed by short periods of in-class technical training as an apprenticeship progresses.

Visit Support for Apprentices to find out more information on Government of Canada programs and benefits to help apprentices complete their training and to help employers hire and train apprentices.

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