Apprenticeship Program FAQs

Application Process

What is a Registered Apprenticeship Program?

Registered apprenticeship programs are an employment training model that produces highly-skilled workers to meet the demands of employers competing in a global economy, through a combination of on-the-job training and related technical instruction. It is a “win-win” approach to workforce development for apprentices (employees) throughout the Commonwealth.

Learn more at

When is recruitment for the apprenticeship program?

Recruitment for the UVA FM Apprenticeship Program begins in the fall and runs through the application period, usually ending the following spring. Learn more about the application process.

If you are interested in having the UVA Apprenticeship team visit your school, classroom, or job fair to talk about apprenticeship and upcoming opportunities, please reach out to any time.

How do I apply?/What is the application process?

Interested apprenticeship applicants attend the annual Apprentice Job Fair and visit UVA Facilities Management's website for information on each trade.

To apply for a position, visit UVA Job Openings during the application period to fill out and submit an application for the Apprenticeship Program. Be sure to include all requested documents, as well as any previous trades experience or education you may have.

Phone interviews are conducted after applications are received. In-person interviews are scheduled once the application period has closed. Following interviews, finalists will have full background checks facilitated by UVA. Letters will be sent out with formal offers or encouraging applicants to reapply the following year. The Apprenticeship team is happy to attend any high school signing days for selected applicants.

During summer, new apprentices will begin their onboarding process and prepare to begin work. Recruitment for the next class of apprentices will begin in fall/winter.

When will interviews be scheduled for prospective candidates?

Following the close of the application period, review of the applications, and phone screening, finalists are selected for interviews. Offer letters are sent to selected candidates in early summer. Onboarding for new apprentices will occur in late July or early August.

Am I able to apply if I am already a University employee?

Yes. University employees are eligible to apply for the Apprenticeship Program. Current UVA employees must apply through their Workday profile.

What formal education is required to be considered for the apprenticeship program?

Applicants must have a high school diploma or a General Educational Development (GED) certificate by the time they begin employment as an apprentice. Education beyond high school is not required but will be taken into consideration due to the competitive aspect of these positions. If an applicant has completed any technical trades classes or has trades experience, this should also be included on the online application.

What previous trades experience is required to be considered for the apprenticeship program?

While no formal trades experience is required, make sure to include information on your application about any kind of experience you have performing or assisting with trades work. We do consider this due to the competitive aspect of these positions.

What trades are offered through the apprenticeship program?

UVA's program offers apprenticeships in carpentry, electrical, HVAC, masonry, plumbing, and instrumentation/controls. Exact openings vary from year to year and multiple trades are recruited annually.

How many apprenticeship positions do you have open and how many applications do you typically receive?

Each year, approximately ten new apprentices are hired into the program depending on business needs. More than 100 applications are received for each trade position posted.

How long is the apprenticeship program?

Over four years, apprentices learn their selected trade through a combination of on-the-job training, technical education, and classroom instruction.

Is it possible to shorten the length of time for the apprenticeship?

The duration of the apprenticeship program is four years based on the requirements of the Virginia Department of Workforce Development and Advancement. Apprentices must complete approximately 576 hours of classroom instruction and 8,000 hours of on-the-job training. Previous experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis if an apprentice has completed some of the required classroom instruction and/or has documented work experience. Since the first year of employment is considered a probationary period for all employees, consideration for crediting an apprentice with previous on-the-job training will not be approached until the probationary period is successfully completed.

Salary & Benefits

What is the average salary for an apprentice?

Apprentices begin with an approximate salary of $20.00 per hour, plus a full benefits package. The program also covers the cost of education classes and required texts. Each year, provided classes are successfully completed, progress is made in learning, and other key requirements are met, apprentices are eligible to receive a salary increase. After graduating from this program, salary is in line with other journey-level staff at UVA FM.

Are those employed through the apprenticeship program eligible for a benefits package?

Yes. An apprentice is a full-time employee of the University and has access to the same benefits as other full-time employees.

Apprenticeship Expectations

What are the typical hours of an apprentice?

Apprentices are required to work 40 hours per week. While hours may vary, the typical schedule is from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Classroom time is held during work hours. Some learning is expected to be completed outside of work hours.

What classroom instruction is required?

Apprentices must complete at least 576 hours of classroom instruction, providing a well-rounded education as they learn their trade. At UVA FM, classes are conducted on site and in person with an online portal used for the completion and submission of homework and quizzes. Classes are held during working hours and attendance is mandatory. Unavoidable absences must be discussed with and approved in advance (or as soon as possible) by the program manager.

Apprentices are required to attend classes regularly, complete assignments on time, and maintain at least an 80% average in coursework. Progress is monitored closely. Apprentices are subject to the rules and policies of program. Learn more on the Curriculum page.

How many nights per week are there classes?

Apprentices are responsible for self-directed online study with a review conducted by UVA FM instructors. Apprentices are expected to complete modules by communicated deadlines.

What on-the-job training is required?

Over the course of the four-year program, apprentices are required to complete 4,000 hours of on-the-job training with licensed journeymen, mentors, supervisors, and others who maintain the high-quality facilities at the University and UVA Health.

How is an apprentice evaluated?

Apprentices are evaluated through assessment of work progress and classroom reports. Learn more on the Curriculum page.

Will all apprentices be offered a position at the end of their four-year apprenticeship?

Apprentices are full-time employees from day one and, if apprenticeship requirements are met (taking and passing classes and learning through on-the-job training), employment will be continued with Facilities Management upon completion of the program.

What title is an apprentice eligible for upon program completion?

Those completing the program will be awarded certificates from the Virginia Department of Workforce Development and Advancement. For those trades where a state licensure certification can be obtained, once the apprentice passes that exam they will be promoted to a journey-level job title. For those where no licensure is available, upon receipt of their certificate from the state, they will be promoted to a journey-level job title.

Will the apprentice be required to pay for their own tuition and books?

No. Classes, books, and technology that are required as part of the apprenticeship training are paid for by UVA Facilities Management.

What else is expected of an apprentice?

  • All apprentices have mandatory shop rotations across UVA. Rotations provide the best education by offering an inside view of their trade in each division within UVA. This creates the most well-rounded tradespeople.
  • In addition to regular check-ins, apprentices are encouraged to maintain regular communication with UVA Facilities Management's Occupational Programs team about school, their rotations, and general concerns/questions.
  • Additional opportunities for apprentices at UVA:
    • Some apprentices are nominated to join in annual outreach efforts to schools, career fairs, and job fairs in the area.
    • Some apprentices take part in FM Safety Committees, which is an optional position.
  • An example of UVA Apprentice Expectations

Future Opportunities

Are apprentices who complete the program then eligible to apply for future promotions?

Opportunities for further training are regularly offered to all FM employees to improve their skills and grow in their areas of expertise. Many Apprenticeship Program graduates have earned promotions and advanced in their careers within Facilities Management. Out of more than 220 Apprenticeship Program graduates, about 145 are still employed at or have retired from the University with almost 20 percent of these employees serving in supervisory positions.