Apprenticeship is hands-on training for people who enjoy learning by doing and want to work in a skilled trade. About 90% of apprenticeship training is provided on the job under the supervision of a qualified journeyperson. The remainder involves classroom theory, usually given at a local community college or provided by another approved training organization.
Apprentices are paid while gaining work experience and their wages increase with their level of skill. After a period of apprenticeship (three to four years) the apprentice takes a certification examination in which successful completion will lead to Journeyperson status.
The apprenticeship model bears similarities to the traditional ways of passing down knowledge and skills in Aboriginal society. Historically, young people were mentored by traditional people or elders in the skills and knowledge associated with their role in the community.