Look Into the Trades this Professional Trades Month


May is Professional Trades Month, an important time to honor hard-working Michiganders in professional trades while encouraging students and adults to explore those career opportunities.  

Currently, there is a professional trades shortage in Michigan that is expected to continue through 2030. In fact, 45,000 new job openings are expected annually with wages that are 16.2 percent higher than other occupations according to MITalent.org.  

In Genesee County, there are plenty of businesses and unions that have apprenticeships available for those looking to get into the trades. With over 1,400 occupations with apprenticeships, you can find a field that interests you. Common trades include plumbers, pipefitters, operating engineers, millwrights, electricians, cement masons, carpenters, bricklayers, boilermakers, and ironworkers. However, you can find unique apprenticeships in our area as well. 

The Fenton Winery & Brewery in Fenton Township currently has apprenticeships for chefs and is working on building an apprenticeship for beer, wine, and spirit making. Through Flint Genesee Job Corps Center those interested in the medical field can get their foot in the door through the Medical Administrative Assistant training program.  

Apprenticeships are a good option for those entering the workforce and looking to find a lifelong career because these programs not only train employees on the job, but many employers and programs pay for any additional costs that could be occurred including college courses or certifications.  

For those interested in getting into the trades, a great place to start is GST Michigan Works! Through the local organizations, Career Coaches are available to work with apprentices through all stages of the program to ensure success. For more information on their program, visit GSTMIWorks.org/Job-Seekers/Registered-Apprenticeship. 

Those looking for apprenticeship opportunities can also look directly to employers that hire those in the trades, or to local unions for the careers they are interested in.  

If you are unsure what path to take, remember that the growth and opportunity in the trades will give you security for the rest of your career. Working in the trades, you aren’t just working a job, you’re building a life.