A Plumbers Local 75 Apprenticeship provides a solid foundation, in protecting the health of the public, by training our workers to install code-compliant plumbing systems. The essential knowledge and skills are passed down from masters of the trade through on-the-job training and related classroom instruction, utilizing resources available from the United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry, in a structured program administered through a joint partnership between labor and management.
On the Job
Plumbers install drain, waste and vent systems, water supply systems, gas systems, backflow protection devices, fixtures and appliances. Plumbers work in all types of weather conditions, both indoors and outside, in high places and confined spaces. Plumbers work in residences, commercial buildings, industrial sites, public utilities and government agencies. Plumbing projects include new construction, remodeling and service work. Plumbers work with pipe cutters, wrenches, torches, assorted power drills, various power saws, channel locks, levels and numerous other hand tools. Over 90% of a Plumbing Apprentice’s training occurs on the job, taught by and under the supervision of licensed, experienced craftsworkers.
In the Classroom
Minimum required topics and hours are established by the Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards (BAS) to support and enhance the on-the-job training. Throughout the apprenticeship, Plumbing Apprentices are PAID, same as being on the job, to attend at least 572 hours of instruction during the day. Apprentices attend an additional minimum of 260 hours of instruction on their own time (usually at night).
Plumbers Local 75 goes above and beyond those minimum requirements and delivers our training in a format, directed by the Union Education Committee, that will produce a highly skilled workforce for our employers and their customers. Plumbing Apprentices learn how to use, care for, and safely handle the tools and materials used in the trades. Apprentices learn safety techniques necessary to establish a safe working environment, including the safe use of ladders, scaffolding, fall protection and the need for trench shoring to prevent cave-ins. Plumbers must be aware of the potential dangers of hazardous and toxic substances in their workplace, and the protective measures required. Apprentices are instructed on drafting, blueprint reading, mathematics, applied physics, chemistry, OSHA Safety and – most importantly – the State of Wisconsin Plumbing Code.
Plumbers Local 75 serves members working in a 14-county area that stretches from Southeastern to Southwestern Wisconsin. Apprentices are selected through local area committees, which oversee a “jurisdictional’” area in which the apprentice would generally work & attend school. Local 75 apprentices are sponsored by the Milwaukee Area Joint Plumbing Apprenticeship Committee or the Madison Area Plumbing JAC. Each committee has its own application procedures, selection and placement methods, program delivery and school used for related instruction.
Milwaukee Training Center
In September, 1980, the Milwaukee Area JAC relocated Apprentice Day School from the Milwaukee Area Technical College to its own member-funded, BAS-approved Industry Training Center. Our current location – conveniently situated on the far Northwest side of Milwaukee – has been the training school for our Milwaukee-area apprentices since 1991.
Madison Area Training
The Madison Area JAC utilizes Madison Area Technical College for training apprentices in the program.
Who better to train the new workforce than those who are in or are products of the industry? Our Instructors, whether former or current plumbers in the field, are dedicated to providing hands-on, personal attention to educate and train our apprentices.
Plumbers Local 75 not only places high importance on the training of our members, but the instructors who do the training. That is why we have our instructors take advantage of the UA’s 5-year, 200-hour Instructor Certificate Program. During the annual weeklong training, over 2,000 UA instructors, from across the United States and Canada, gather to receive instruction on the most relevant, cutting edge training using the most advanced resources in the industry.
Plumbers Local 75 has always been a champion of the industry by remaining actively engaged, influential in & supportive of legislative and political fronts that further the industry, protect workers’ rights and safeguard consumers from unsafe plumbing practices.
At the 2011 Wisconsin Apprenticeship Centennial Conference, Plumbers Local 75 was humbled to receive the Centennial Sponsor Award, given to those organizations who have “demonstrated outstanding achievement in apprenticeship training” and because of “a demonstrated willingness to go ‘above and beyond the call of duty’ for the continued growth of apprenticeship.”