CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Tradesmen and women were at the University of Virginia Wednesday, Feb. 12, inspiring young people to look into the possibility of a less-traditional college experience and career.
UVA’s Apprenticeship Program hosted a job fair, where high school students from as far as Staunton came to explore the opportunity of pursuing a trade. The program aims to create an innovative workforce by training the next generation of tradespeople in crafts like masonry, carpentry, and plumbing.
During the four-year program, apprentices learn their selected trade through on-the-job training and technical instruction and education.
Each apprentice is considered a full-time UVA employee with salary and benefits.
"So this gives me the opportunity to tell people that the trades are a great career. It's a great career choice, it's not just a job. And I'm getting the chance to talk with a lot of young people in the position I was in two years ago, and giving them some advice that I didn't have," Benjamin Melugin said.
Each year, the program hires approximately 15 apprentices after receiving hundreds of applications.