Become an Apprentice

What is an Apprentice

The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades and its employers established the iFTI to provide ongoing education and training for all our union members. And an IUPAT apprenticeship is where all careers in the finishing trades start. 

Apprenticeship programs are co-sponsored by the IUPAT/iFTI and are designed to give you the advanced practical skills and knowledge you need to achieve success. During your apprenticeship, you’ll learn through a hybrid approach that combines classroom instruction and on-the-job learning. You’ll complete a minimum of 144 hours of classroom instruction as well as the required minimum on-the-job hours per year of apprenticeship as mandated by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Your curriculum will include: an introduction to our union and the finishing trades; health and safety; and leadership and professional development. All apprentices are assessed on their knowledge, skills and abilities in both the core and trade-specific curriculum through hands-on and written tests as well as how they perform tasks on the job.

You’ll also have instant access to all training materials through the Finishing Trades Institute’s Learning Management System (LMS). This is a secure, web-based learning portal designed for the administration, documentation, tracking and reporting of training programs, classroom and online events, e-learning programs and training content. 

The FTI curriculum and training centers constantly evolve to remain at the cutting edge of each of our trades. And while a typical apprenticeship lasts three years, if you have experience in a craft it can be much shorter.

Click on the trades below to learn more about some of the careers we offer. Or, get in touch with a local IUPAT district council.