Find out what kind of training is required to become a carpenter. Get to understand more about what learn in carpentry programs and learn about some of the state, trade, and vocational carpentry schools that offer them.
The trade schools listed in this article offer carpentry programs of various lengths, from certificate programs completed in less than a year to two-year programs that lead to an associate’s degree.
A good carpentry program often includes some other elective courses in the building trade, offer many opportunities for hands-on learning, and emphasizes healthy occupational guidelines and safety training.
Carpentry is not an inferior field as many would think – the industry is the 30th most popular industry in the USA, with an average of 3,273 degrees and certificates offered on a yearly basis.
What is Carpentry?
The profession and craft of carpentry include cutting, shaping and assembling building materials in the construction of buildings, ships, wooden bridges, concrete forms and others.
Carpenters have traditionally worked with natural wood and rougher work. For example, framing, but also many other materials are used today, sometimes taking into account the finer trades of making cabinets and joinery.
What Education do I need to become a Carpenter?
To become a carpenter, you must have a high school diploma. Many of these professionals also undertake apprenticeships or other on-the-job training to enter the industry. A typical one-year apprenticeship includes at least 144 hours of technical training and a total of 2,000 hours of paid work.
US Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected that the carpentry industry’s employment rate will remain flat from 2019 to 2029, above the average for all occupations. However, there are regional differences in the United States, as some areas are developing faster than others.
To improve your competitiveness in the job market, it is best to complete post-secondary education by completing a training program in any trade or vocational carpentry school, you can go for a certificate or associate degree program at any public school.
What Can I Learn in Carpentry Certificate and Diploma Programs?
The programs are designed to teach you everything you need to know about carpentry in the construction of houses and other structures.
After the programs you will be able to understand and read blueprints, measure, cut and shape wood, frame floors, walls and ceilings – you will learn how to join wood and other materials and how to handle a variety of fasteners including screws, nails, glue and rivets, and use hand and power tools.
The programs will also teach you how you be able to repair and maintain structures that are made with wood, interior and exterior finishing, window and door manufacturing, and occupational health and safety.
Also Read: 12 Online Construction Management Courses With Certificates
List of Best Trade Schools for Carpentry
- Ivy Tech Community College Trade Programs
- Western Technical College Trade Programs
- Des Moines Area Community College Trade Programs
- Bismarck State College Trade Programs
- Rochester Community and Technical College Trade Programs
- Western Iowa Tech Community College Trade Programs
- Washburn Institute of Technology Trade Programs
- City Colleges of Chicago – Kennedy-King College Trade Programs
- Tulsa Technology Center Trade Programs
- Hennepin Technical College
#1. Ivy Tech Community College Trade Programs
Ivy Tech Community College offers a top-notch building construction technology program designed to usher intending students into the carpentry career. The school is a public institution located in Indianapolis, Indiana. Indianapolis’ urban feel makes it an ideal location for students who enjoy a variety of educational and recreational opportunities.
Ivy Tech’s Building Construction Technology program focuses on hands-on experience and service education. This program includes electives that will prepare learners for national certification exams. The school has an architecture laboratory where students build life-sized house models. The program teaches the following skills:
- How to read and interpret construction documents, drawings, codes and specifications
- How to prepare budget estimates and plans for construction projects
- How to provide guidance, consulting and advice to buyers, employees and other construction professionals
- How to make use of special skills and tools when designing, installing and building projects
- How to know and follow safety regulations and rules
#2. Western Technical College Trade Programs
Western Technical College is a public institution located in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Western Technical College’s location is perfect for students who want to live in the city.
This school is one of the best trade schools for carpentry. They offer framing and construction certificate programs that allow participants to develop the necessary rough carpentry skills for construction.
Some of the topics that you will find in this program are framing techniques, tools and equipment, safety, blueprint reading and construction process. Practical training in the laboratory prepares you to be part of a team of framing specialists.
Also Read: 25 High Paying Trade School Degrees
#3. Des Moines Area Community College Trade Programs
Des Moines Community College is another trade school for carpenters. The school is a public institution located in Ankeny, Iowa. Anken is considered a peaceful and safe suburb near the bustling city centre.
DMACC’s Construction Trades Diploma program presents the students with the teachings and training that will equip them with the skills and knowledge needed to work in residential or commercial construction.
Participants of the program will receive daily personal lessons with the same instructor throughout the program – they will actively work on building several houses in the Des Moines metro area and they will also be given the opportunity to work on cabinet closets and other projects during the training program. They will also be transported to construction sites.
Furthermore, students will have access to an on-site program advisor whose duty is to make sure that each student is carried along and guided properly throughout the course of the program.
In the program, you will be taught how to read blueprints, and estimate materials, frames, finishes, siding, roofing, and concrete. You will also be an opportunity to earn a construction management degree.
#4. Bismarck State College Trade Programs
Bismarck State College is a public institution located in Bismarck, North Dakota. The location of the school is ideal for students who enjoy the convenience of city life.
BSC Carpentry students learn a variety of carpentry skills while building single-family homes in Bismarck. The training includes the safe and proper use and maintenance of hand tools and electrical equipment. Students study house-building methods and principles, construction math, blueprint reading, sustainable/green buildings, energy-efficient buildings, materials, cabinets, drywall and more. The carpentry program by BSC is a limited nine-month program designed to prepare students for entry-level jobs.
#5. Rochester Community and Technical College Trade Programs
Rochester Community and Technical College is a is one of the trade schools for carpentry that is worth considering. The public institution is located in Rochester, Minnesota. The location of the school is ideal for students who enjoy the convenience of city life.
The RCTC carpentry program is a top-notch program tailored in a way that will prepare students for carpentry careers in residential and commercial construction, factories, building maintenance and cabinet workshops.
The main focus of the RCTC carpentry program is building houses. This home construction experience includes building layout, foundations, rough framing, roofing, insulation, drywall installation and interior finishing. About two-thirds of the time spent studying the program will be used in a new home construction site to offer a hands-on experience.
Also Read: Full List of Trades for Women in 2023
#6. Western Iowa Tech Community College Trade Programs
Western Iowa Tech Community College is a school to consider if you are looking for a good program in carpentry. The school is a public institution located in Sioux City, Iowa. Sioux City is a great place for students who love city life more than country life.
This is a carpentry certificate program that is aimed to prepare you for an entry-level job in the construction industry. They teach the latest carpentry techniques and building materials.
All students in this construction program are to have their own personal toolkits for class/lab projects.
#7. Washburn Institute of Technology Trade Programs
Washburn Institute of Technology offers a carpentry program that you should consider. This is a public institution located in Topeka, Kansas. Topeka is an ideal location for students who wants a city life.
The training covers basic theory and offers both didactic and practical experience in carpentry, roofing and masonry work. Students learn by using their new skills to build structures in the carpentry lab. If you are attending the half day, you will be able to complete the training and earn a 25-credit technical certificate in two semesters.
Furthermore, it is important that you visit the main campus at 5724 SW Huntoon St as that is where the carpentry program is offered.
#8. City Colleges of Chicago – Kennedy-King College Trade Programs
City Colleges of Chicago – King Kennedy College is a public institution and one of the best trade schools for carpentry. The school is located in Chicago, Illinois. Chicago’s urban atmosphere makes it a great place for students to enjoy a variety of educational and recreational opportunities.
The school offers a Basic Certificate in Construction Carpentry – a program that is designed to prepare students for entry-level apprenticeships with contractors in construction.
The program teaches blueprint reading, safety and the use of tools, worksite safety, construction materials, and math concepts. The content of the course encompasses an introduction to the carpentry trade and the basics of arc welding.
Furthermore, in this program, theory and practical application are emphasized through it. Upon successful completion of the course, students earn a 10-hour OSHA Certification and Scaffold Certification.
#9. Tulsa Technology Center Trade Programs
Tulsa Tech Centre offer top-notch programs in carpentry that is accredited by the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education. This school should be on your list if carpentry is a trade you want to ply. This is a public institution located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The location of the school is ideal for students who enjoy the convenience of city life.
After taking advantage of this Carpentry program, you will be able to use a variety of professional hand, power and pneumatic tools –you will also learn how to interpret and use blueprints, sketches or construction plans to prepare project layouts and build, construct, install or repair anything made of wood.
#10. Hennepin Technical College
At Hennepin Technical College, students taking the carpentry program are taught by professionals who will help them to develop a variety of general carpentry and joinery skills.
Some of the things you will learn in this program include blueprint reading, specifications and sketches; determining the best structure and material to perform the job; and applying skills to get incredible results.
Students also learn to use hand and power tools as well as household appliances safely and efficiently. Each carpentry student at this trade school must purchase the necessary tool kit, and a tool list is provided on the first day of class.
These tools become the property of the students and can therefore be used to do their work. Hennepin Technical College emphasizes sustainability.
The student learns about sustainable building materials and methods and the best ways to use them. Professionalism and work ethics are taught because these important skills will help them keep a job or a client.
Also Read: Best 25 Trades You Can Learn Online
Types of Carpentry to Consider?
Carpenters typically specialize in woodworking jobs they like or are good at, such as:
Framework, Theater set construction, Rough-in construction, Plumbing & Electrical, HVAC-R, Flooring sanders & finishers, Green Carpentry focused on environmentally safe construction, Roofing, Remodeling, Historical preservation, Log construction, Sheetrock walls and painting, Kitchen cabinetry, Foundation work, etc.
How long does it take to become a Carpenter?
Taking pre-apprenticeship training in a trade school that offers carpentry programs or vocational college typically takes 8-24 months. Although less common, however, you can find programs that may not take that long to complete (often including online courses in carpentry) that will allow you to learn the basics of becoming a carpenter in as little as four months. *
Apprenticeships can last up to four years. If you did pre-apprenticeship training, then that extra coursework can add an additional two years.
There is another point that must be kept in mind when calculating the time required for carpentry training. On-the-job training for carpenters and other professionals is often paid. Therefore, you are more likely to start reaping the financial benefits of a career in carpentry earlier than some other careers.
FAQ on the Trade Schools for Carpentry
Here are some of the questions and answers that may help you know more about carpentry programs, training and the career.
Is carpentry a promising career?
Carpentry is a craft that allows people to do things with their own hands. There are many different types of carpentry, which means you have many career options, and skilled carpenters are currently in high demand in Australia.
What qualities do I need to be successful as a carpenter?
A carpenter must of course be highly skilled and trained in proper construction techniques, but other necessary qualities include Math skills, Physical strength, Problem-solving skills, Dexterity, Business skills, Customer service skills, Detail-oriented, Creativity, etc.
What are some examples of carpentry?
You will find a lot of carpentry in today’s world, from building houses with wood and entire boat hulls to making small jobs like chairs and cabinets.
Do carpenters make a lot of money?
You can make up to $15 and $22 an hour as a carpenter apprentice in Australia – that’s around $22,500 to $47,000 full-time. The entry income for a full-time carpenter is around $55,000, with an average of $74,000. As a top-end carpenter, you will earn around $110,000 per year.
What is joinery compared to carpentry?
You cannot really separate joiners and carpenters as they are related. Most carpentry programs train you to become a carpenter and a joiner at the same time. But we can separate the two by saying that a joiner works with wood in a workshop while a carpenter works with wood to fit things in a worksite.
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