Training & Education

Training is what sets Union Carpenters apart from our non-union counterparts. Training gives us the skills we need to:

• Do a better job
• Get more done in less time
• Get it right the first time
• Work more safely

Our commitment to training builds the skilled, productive workforce our economy needs today and in the future. Our training helps our signatory contractors compete, stay profitable and succeed. It helps us earn the wages and benefits that give us a better life.

When it comes to training, the Carpenters Union literally puts its money where its mouth is. The Regional Council has 16 training centers in operation. Every year, we spend $5 million to provide apprenticeship and upgrade training to our members. Not one dime comes from a state or federal government. We pay for it all ourselves. That’s how committed we are to training our members — the skilled, new workers this industry needs.

The Regional Council also develops custom training in areas such as paper mills and health care construction — training that responds to the demands of key industries in our region.

Our members never stop learning. We offer hundreds of safety and skill advancement classes every year. Even veteran members constantly improve their productivity and keep up-to-date with the latest in industry practices and technology. Best yet, all of this training is free to members in good standing.

Union apprenticeship training is unparalleled. Our signatory contractors and our members partner to help us build a skilled workforce. All of our apprenticeship training takes place through rigorous, state-certified programs. That’s a huge difference from the haphazard “training” nonunion outfits say they provide. Our training goes far beyond piecemeal instruction in which someone gives a kid a tool and says “Do this.”

Instead, our apprentices learn their entire craft, adding skill blocks and certification in the classroom, in the shop and on the job. They work side-by-side with skilled journey-level workers every step of the way, in the tradition of the centuries-old European guild system.

Our instructors are among the 1,600 instructors nationally certified by the United Brotherhood of Carpenters. The UBC spends more than $120 million each year on training. That includes providing more than 100 “Train the Trainer” courses annually so our instructors stay up-to-date on their skills.