How do I get into an apprenticeship?

  1. You need to make contact with potential employers in the building/construction industry, and ask if they are willing to consider signing you up as an apprentice*. Note: your employer may require that you complete a 90-day trial period before you can be formally signed with them as an apprentice. Your employer can advise you if this applies. 
  2. You and your employer will need to sign the 3-way apprenticeship contract to confirm that your employer agrees to take you on as an apprentice.
  3. You can then apply for the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry.
  4. Unitec will then work on completing the 3-way apprenticeship contract (this will include eliciting support from ITAB as the 3rd party in your apprenticeship agreement) and process your enrolment into the programme.
  5. With successful enrolment into this programme, you’ll then be officially starting your apprenticeship.

*Can Unitec place me in an apprenticeship?

No. An apprenticeship is an agreement arranged between you and your employer. However, we may be able to connect you to employers that are seeking apprentices. Contact us here if this interests you.

How long will an apprenticeship take?

Apprentice carpenters need to complete a minimum of 8,000 hours of theory and practical work experience. On average, this takes 4 years to complete. With these hours and successful completion of the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry, you will then become a fully qualified carpenter. With this qualification you may then apply to become a Licensed Building Practioner (LBP) in carpentry through MBIE.

How can Unitec prepare me for an apprenticeship?

The best way to prepare for an apprenticeship is by first completing the New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills – Carpentry. In this programme you’ll learn and practice the fundamentals of carpentry and be better prepared to start an apprenticeship. Most employers in the building industry prefer apprentices who have completed the New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills - Carpentry.

Who is ITAB, and how will they be involved in my apprenticeship?

The Industry Training Association for Building (ITAB) is the association connected to the NZ Certified Builders Association - which are made up of trade qualified carpenters and builders. ITAB support on-site learning for apprentices in Unitec’s New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry and therefore, are one of the parties that will support your apprenticeship training with Unitec. ITAB will become the third party of your apprenticeship contract along with your employer and yourself. 

Unitec is responsible for working with you to complete the theory components of your apprenticeship, for liaising and working with your employer and you throughout the apprenticeship, regular site visits, and we help sort any issues that may arise, until you’ve successfully completed the apprenticeship.

What if I'm already working in the industry?

If you've already set up an apprenticeship agreement or you want to become an apprentice carpenter, simply apply for the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry. Read more about the programme at the link above.