Craft Professions: Find out more about the careers available in construction - Build Your Future | Careers in Construction

Craft Professions

  • Architect
    $35.14 Hourly / $73,090 Annual

    Do you see beauty in buildings? Do you like to design? Then you may be drawn to architecture. Architects plan and design houses, office buildings and other structures. Architects normally work in an office where they meet with clients, engineers and other architects. They draw on paper and in computer programs. They also build 3D models of buildings.

    Education: To become an architect you need a degree in architecture, have on the job training through an internship and pass a state licensing exam.

    Qualifications: Architects must be detailed oriented, know how to manage their time and problem solve while working on construction projects.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Boilermaker
    $27.19 Hourly / $56,560 Annually

    Check out this adventurous career where you can work with fire and use a variety of tools! Boilermakers job duties are versatile and require knowledge from other crafts. They work in a variety of areas, from power generation and paper mills to refineries. They make and install boilers and other large containers. Tasks include reading blueprints, welding or bolting pieces together and installing valves and supports. Boilermakers also perform routine maintenance.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Manual dexterity, strength and coordination. Boilermakers also need to have technical skills such as welding, rigging, and be able to use a variety of tools.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Carpenter
    $24.73 Hourly / $51,441 Annual

    Do you like building, traveling and being outdoors? Commercial and Industrial Carpenters construct, erect, install, and repair structures and fixtures. These carpenters are involved in many different kinds of construction, from buildings to highways and bridges to power plants.

    Education:“Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Carpenters need manual dexterity, good eye-hand coordination, physical fitness and a good sense of balance. The ability to solve mathematical problems quickly and accurately also is required. Carpenters can learn their craft while making good money through on-the-job training.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Civil Engineer
    $38.14 Hourly / $79,340 Annual

    Do you like designing and executing plans? Do you like to see something you designed be built in front of your eye? Then becoming a civil engineer may be for you. Civil engineers design, construct, supervise, operate, and maintain large construction projects and systems, including roads, buildings, airports, tunnels, dams, bridges, and systems for water supple and sewage treatment. They spend time both in the office and out on the site.

    Education: Civil Engineers need a bachelor’s degree in either civil engineering or civil engineer technology. Some jobs may require a graduate degree.

    Qualifications: Civil Engineers must be able to problem solve and analyze issues. Being great in subjects like science and math are a plus.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Craft Laborer
    $14.02 Hourly / $29,160 Annually

    Would you consider yourself a jack of all trades? If so, a construction laborer career might be an option to explore! They perform many basic tasks on construction sites and have the opportunity to learn a variety of craft areas. Some work at great heights or outdoors. This occupation would be a great way to get your foot in the door to other career opportunities in the construction industry.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Physical fitness, strength, mobility and be able to multi-task are characteristics a craft laborer must possess. Daily tasks may vary depending on projects that are assigned.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Electrician
    $27.49 Hourly / $57,174 Annual

    If you’re into sound systems, robotics, or tinkering with wires, you are probably thinking about a career as an electrician. Electricians install and maintain all of the electrical and power systems for our homes, businesses and factories. They install and maintain the wiring and control equipment through which electricity flows. They also install and maintain electrical equipment and machines in factories and a wide range of other businesses. Electricians in large factories usually do maintenance work that is more complex.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Manual dexterity, hand-eye coordination, physical fitness, and a good sense of balance. Electricians also need good color vision in order to recognized electrical wires by color.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Glazier
    $18.08 Hourly / $37,610 Annual

    If you enjoy adventures, scenic views and have a creative side then try out this profession! Glaziers are true artisans who work with glass as their mediums. They select, cut, install, replace and remove residential, commercial and artistic glass. Glaziers use a variety of tools including glazing knives, saws, drills, grinders, putty and glazing compounds. They must work as a team when guiding and installing glass for large buildings.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: A glazier must have the ability to mold and manipulate objects while paying attention to detail. Balance and hand-eye coordination are a must when working on ladders and scaffolds.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    HVAC Technician
    $20.98 Hourly / $43,640 Annual

    Are you into model building or have named yourself Mr. Fix It? HVAC Technicians are always piecing things together as they install, maintain, and repair heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. HVAC covers it all: motors, compressors, pumps, fan, thermostats, and computerized switches control systems in residential, commercial, and industrial structures. Specialize in specific equipment, such as hydronics (water-based heating systems), solar panels, or commercial refrigeration.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good hand-eye coordination, physical dexterity, mechanical and mathematical aptitude. Some states require licensure by passing a written examination.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Instrumentation Technician
    $32.61 Hourly / $67,823 Annually

    Are you a problem solver with a knack for small details? Instrumentation may be the perfect craft profession for you. Instrument Fitters and Technicians perform key installation and maintenance functions across several industries and are trained in piping, tubing, fasteners, and metallurgy. Instrumentation Technicians and Fitters have to be familiar with electrical systems, craft-specific drawings, and must be experts in the hand and power tools specific to their trade.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Manual dexterity, hand-eye coordination, physical fitness, and a good sense of balance.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Insulator
    $20.74 Hourly / $41,480 Annual

    Work with your hands in an industry that provides the economy with energy saving options. The insulation mechanic installs insulation systems on piping, plumbing, HVAC systems, equipment and other processing systems in new construction, retrofit and maintenance projects in the commercial and industrial industry. The result of an insulation mechanic’s work ensures that systems perform at their highest level – saving energy, reducing fuel costs, reducing emissions, and enhancing the work environment.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools..

    Qualifications: Coordination, strength and manual dexterity. Being physically fit is a plus as insulators often work in confined spaces.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • professions-slides-ironworker
    Ironworker
    $24.88 Hourly / $51,740 Annua

    If you are looking for an exciting career balancing from the top of a brand new skyscraper while using a rivet gun, then ironworking is for you. Ironworkers place and install iron or steel girders, columns, and other construction materials. They must always be paying attention to details to check vertical and horizontal alignment with plumb bobs, laser equipment, transits or levels – then they bolt or weld the piece permanently in place.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good hand-eye coordination, physical dexterity, good balance and agility, mechanical and mathematic aptitude. Ironworkers should not be afraid of heights or suffer from dizziness. Welder certification is very helpful in this field, as well.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • professions-slides-mason
    Mason
    $25.51 Hourly / $53,061 Annual

    If you dream of building a structure with your own two hands, or restoring historical buildings, you may want to get training in masonry. Brickmasons, blockmasons, and stonemasons use bricks, concrete blocks, and natural stones to build attractive, durable surfaces and structures. These craft professionals have created buildings, walls, and roads for thousands of years and will continue to do so long into the future.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Strong work ethic, dependability, and basic math skills.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Millwright
    $29.45 Hourly / $61,253 Annual

    Do you take things apart and put them back together just to see how they work? Do you always have the right tool for the job? Maybe becoming a millwright is the right path for you. Millwrights work on construction sites and in factories assembling and disassembling machinery. This work can involve intricate technical repairs or heavy machining tools, depending on the project. Millwrights have to be able to understand manuals for many different types of machines as well as have a high level of problem solving skills.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good depth perception and manual dexterity. Millwrights also need to have good judgement and decision making skills.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • professions-slides-crane
    Mobile Crane Operator
    $29.38 Hourly / $61,100 Annua1

    Don’t you wish your entire career could involve a screen and a joystick? No, we aren’t talking about becoming a professional video game player. Mobile crane operators use state-of-the art heavy machinery to move massive materials. A series of joysticks, levers, and pedals allows the operator to use his or her knowledge of load calculations to place materials around a construction site.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good sense of balance, ability to judge distance, eye-hand-foot coordination, comfortable with technology, basic math skills. Seventeen States have laws requiring crane operators to be licensed with a written and skills test.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Operator Engineer
    $28.09 Hourly / $58,429 Annual

    Do you drive a big truck? When you consider the big machines that clear a construction site, it could put a pickup truck to shame. Construction equipment operators clear and grade land for the construction of roads, buildings, and bridges, airport runways, power generation facilities, dams, levees, and other structures.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Mechanical aptitude, experience operating mobile equipment (such as farm tractors), good physical condition, good sense of balance, hand-eye-foot coordination. A commercial driver’s license is often needed to haul equipment to various jobsites.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Painter
    $18.67 Hourly / $38,830 Annual

    Do you have an artsy side? Try your hand at becoming a professional painter and apply just the right paint, stain, varnish, or other finish to buildings and industrial structures. This career path ranges from industrial spray painters who apply coatings to prevent deterioration to decorative artisans who create faux finishes.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good manual dexterity, vision, and color sense, as well as physical stamina and balance. For industrial painting, a certification from the National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE) may be necessary.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Pipefitter
    $27.43 Hourly / $57,051 Annual

    Are you a little bit of a perfectionist? Do you enjoy reading plans and making something useful? Consider training to become a pipefitter. Pipefitters plan and install detailed pipe systems for commercial and industrial projects. These pipes may carry water, chemicals, or gases to the crucial building systems. Pipefitters use many tools to cut and bend pipes to exact specifications.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Ability to solve complex problems using reasoning and advanced math. Pipefitters should also be familiar with general mechanics and how various materials fit together.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Pipeline Operator
    Pipeline Operator
    $25.70 Hourly / $53,460 Annual

    Do you dream about spending your days outdoors and traveling around the world? As a pipeliner, you are responsible for maintaining and repairing pipelines, pumping stations, and tank farms. Pipeliners are trained to use sandblasting equipment to remove rust and foreign substances from meters and valves and also to use equipment such as backhoes, bulldozers, and side booms. A typical day includes installing screw-pipe and manifold connections, using wrenches and pipe tongs, operating pumping equipment and pipe- wrapping machines.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Pipeline skill assessment to qualify under the Department of Transportation’s regulation for Pipeline Operator Qualification.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Plumber
    $24.92 Hourly / $51,830 Annual

    Are you always tinkering with objects? Do people ask for your help with fixing mechanical things? Consider plumbing. Plumbers do much more than fix sinks and toilets in residential homes. They design and install piping systems that distribute water and remove waste from buildings, connecting to washers, sinks, heating, and cooling systems. Plumbers have to be knowledgeable in the water distribution, blueprint reading, local ordinances and regulations, mathematics, mechanical drawing, physics, welding, and soldering.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: In most parts of the United States, plumbers must be licensed before they may work independently, which requires 2 to 5 years of experience and passing a written examination.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Project Manager
    $39.80 Hourly / $82,790 Annual

    Project Managers and construction managers keep projects running. Project managers are essential to completing projects on time and on budget. They plan, coordinate, budget and supervise construction projects from development to completion. Project managers may work from a main office, but they spend most of their time on site where they monitor projects and make daily decisions about construction activities.

    Education: Many construction companies prefer that their project managers and construction managers have a bachelor’s degree and on the job training through internships and apprenticeships.

    Qualifications: Communication skills, developing ideas and time management are key contributors with being a project manager.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Rigger
    $25.65 Hourly / $53,352 Annual

    Are you interested in practical physics? Do you love to work outdoors? That combination is a good start to becoming a rigger. Riggers attach loads of construction equipment to cranes or structures using cables, pulleys and winches. Quick load calculations are necessary for each load and engineering principles are always in play. Riggers use various suspension techniques to get their load around obstacles on a construction site to the desired location.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good depth perception and manual dexterity. Riggers also need to have good judgement and decision making skills.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Roofer
    $16.97 Hourly / $35,290 Annual

    Do you love seeing your accomplishments unfold before your eyes? Do you love to be on top of the world? Well then being a Roofer is for you! Roofers a variety of materials to roofs and other surfaces. These materials include hot and cold applied built-up roofing and waterproofing, asphalt shingles, tile, and other materials that protect surfaces from the elements. Teamwork is important, as roofers work in crews. Work is usually in the open and at heights, on roofs or scaffolds. Roofers usually go through a formal apprenticeship which includes about three to four years of paid on-the-job training combined with classroom instruction.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good depth perception, manual dexterity and decision making skills.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Sheet Metal Worker
    $22.46 Hourly / $46,721 Annua

    Are you a visual person? Do you enjoy math, mechanics and fitting puzzles together? Sheet Metal Workers cut and mold sheets of metal into products for installing and repairing ventilation and air ducts. They also construct aluminum siding, metal roofing, and gutters. Most sheet metal fabrication shops are completely computerized, so sheet metal workers may be responsible for programming control systems on various pieces of equipment.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Good hand-eye coordination, physical dexterity, mechanical and mathematic aptitude.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • Site Layout/ Survey Engineer
    $28.24 Hourly / $58,740 Annual

    If math, measuring and engineering is your strength, consider a career in Site Layout. Surveyors are the first on the site to gather data about the elevation, contour, and dimensions of the land being developed. This data gets used for everything from mapmaking, mining, engineering and general construction. Survey jobs are available in every segment of the construction industry including Highway and Bridge construction, Pipeline and Mining.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Physical fitness, good judge of distance, basic geometry and trigonometry skills.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Sprinkler Fitter
    $25.94 Hourly / $53,959 Annual

    Are you a detail-oriented kind of person? Sprinkler Fitters design, install, and test automatic fire protection sprinkler systems and components such as sprinklers, piping, and valves. They have to know all of the local and nation sprinkler codes and make sure that everything lines up.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: In some parts of the United States, sprinkler fitters must be licensed before they may work independently, which requires 2 to 5 years of experience and passing a written examination.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

  • professions-slides-welder
    Welder
    $30.95 Hourly / $64,373 Annual

    Do you love playing with a little bit of fire? Welders join objects together by applying heat or pressure. Skilled welders have a thorough knowledge of welding principals and metals. They use blueprints and drawings to build anything from ships to cars to bridges. Welders are also crucial in maintaining power plants of all types and have the opportunity to travel throughout the year.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Some welding positions require general certifications, or certifications in specific skills such as inspection or robotic welding. The American Welding Society certification courses are widely used throughout the United States.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.

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    Wind Turbine Maintenance Tech
    $22.07 Hourly / $45,907 Annual

    Are you a rock-climber? Do you love heights? Are you passionate about the renewable energy movement? Wind Turbines may hold your next career! Wind Turbine Maintenance technicians are responsible for performing the complicated repairs and inspections on existing turbines. Sometimes these repairs take place at the very top of the turbine in the nacelle operating room that houses the instruments that measure wind speed and direction.

    Education: “Earn as you learn” apprenticeship programs, colleges, and technical schools.

    Qualifications: Physical aptitude and a love of heights. Experience in electrical or mechanical maintenance fields is a plus.

    Find a Training Center: Training Center Directory.