Masonry is a skill that can be learned through personal experience and by enrolling in a trade school. Outstanding buildings and architectural masterpieces are brought about with the help of very skilled masons. Masons are always in great demand and acquiring the proper skills and training for this always-in-demand job can prove to be very lucrative and rewarding. One can enjoy career advancement and job security and financial stability. It can be your outlet for your creative and analytical skills and boost your sense of pride when you see a construction that is very stable and beautiful that was brought about with your skills.
A skilled mason ensures that the building is safe and structurally sound to last for many generations. You will be working with stones, terracotta, tiles, glass blocks, concrete blocks and bricks. You job is very physical and manual and requires the use of hand and power tools that demand precision. If you are considering a career in masonry, check out the steps you need to take.
- Check your school administration for some referral for vocational schools that offer masonry classes. You can also consult your local community college. Do an online search to find out schools near you that offer vocational training for masonry.
- You can visit the Mason Contractors Association of America website for training and employment resources within your locality. You can get additional information regarding state training requirements and the location of training centers and programs.
- Enroll in an apprenticeship program available from a trade school. You can also get it from a masonry union program or get practical experience from a mason contractor by getting a job as an apprentice. You may be able to get an employer to pay for your tuition.
- The masonry apprenticeship programs have classroom instruction as well as on-the-job training that can last for three years before you are qualified to be a masonry journeyman. You should be at least seventeen years old and in good physical condition to qualify for the apprenticeship. You should also have a high school diploma, with considerable knowledge of algebra and geometry and should be able to easily understand written instructions, and must possess the ability to read maps and blueprints.
- You should have actual interest on working with stones, mortar and other construction materials such as tiles, bricks, glass and terracotta. You should be artistic as great designs can be achieved with the mixture of texture and finish and a combination of elements. Increase your knowledge by reading books and articles on the various materials used for masonry and the new applied techniques used by well known masons and construction companies.
- Be observant of your surrounding. Take a closer look at the buildings, pavements, sidewalks and landscaping and check how the use of different masonry materials were incorporated to come up with beautiful designs and artistry.
- Read up on great architectural pieces and gain inspirations from master masons. Having an inspirational character will increase your desire to perfect your chosen craft. Learn basic masonry techniques from books on the subject. You should also be knowledgeable of basic masonry terms.
There are many jobs you can branch out to when you have the proper skills in masonry with additional training and experience. As a masonry apprentice, you can earn while you learn. You will get paid for your on-the-job training, starting from about fifty percent of the salary of a journeyman mason and it can increase to about ninety percent on the last year of your training.