Skip To Main Content

Pathfinder Apprenticeship

What is an Apprenticeship?  An apprenticeship is an employer-driven experiential learning comprised of the following elements:

  • Paid on-the-job training (you are a paid employee of the business!)
  • Related classroom instruction that increases the student/employee's skill level and wages, and
  • Industry-recognized credential(s) or certificate(s)

CareerWise Colorado Apprenticeships: One source of apprenticeship opportunities available for TSD students is through the CareerWise Colorado Program.

CareerWise logo

CareerWise Colorado: 

  • 2000 hour registered apprenticeships (usually a 2-3 year commitment)
  • Open to students in participating districts throughout Northern Colorado.  Some positions may be open only to TSD students.
  • CareerWise apprentices earn:
    • $30,000 to $40,000 in wages over the course of the apprenticeship
    • FREE college credit or other related training - typically about 1 semester's worth of free credit via a local higher education partner, paid for by the business.  College credit typically takes place in the 2nd or 3rd year of apprenticeship.
    • Nationally recognized industry credential or certification
  • Available positions and employers vary from year to year.  
  • CareerWise flyer in English and Spanish

Other Apprenticeship opportunities are available outside of the CareerWise program and are found in Xello. Some of these apprenticeships are for graduating seniors and/or students that are age 18+ but there are also youth apprenticeships for current high school students outside of the CareerWise program.

Apprenticeship Requirements/Prerequisites: These are typical general requirements to participate in an Apprenticeship.  Businesses may have additional requirements depending on their industry or the specific position.

  • Juniors or Seniors (apply as a sophomore or junior), must be age 16 by the start of apprenticeship
  • On-track for on-time graduation from high school and can accommodate an apprenticeship in your schedule
  • Strong attendance and positive behavior
  • Must provide own transportation
  • Employer makes final hiring decisions and may have additional requirements such as a drug screen, background check, immunizations, etc.

Credits and Scheduling:

  • Career Pathways Elective
    • Graded S/U (pass/fail). Does not impact GPA.
  • Credits:  Apprentices earn 1.5 credits per semester.  Minimum of 195 hours at worksite per semester.  Apprentices work approximately 12-16 hours/week during year 1, 20-24 hours/week during year 2 (if still in school), and work full time during year 3.  Students may work more hours during breaks and summer.
  • Time length:  CareerWise and other Dept. of Labor Registered Apprenticeships are 2000 hours of on-the-job paid training and 144 hours of related training. 2 or 3 years in length, depending on industry and credential.  Depending if you start the apprenticeship as a junior or senior, you may have 1-2 "gap years" as you complete the apprenticeship.
  • Hours: Apprentices typically work approximately 12-16 hours/week during year 1, and 20-24 hours/week during year 2.  Students may work more hours during breaks and summer.
  • Schedule:  Morning or afternoon schedule or block days schedule, depending on business needs or student schedule constraints.  Students work part time and attend school part time. 

Apprenticeship Application Process:

  1. Request the Opportunity in Xello.  Locate the opportunity you are interested in and hit the Request button.  The WBL Specialist will connect with you about the opportunity, your eligibility, and provide you with application information and resume/interview support.
  2. Eligibility Check:  WBL Specialist will complete an eligibility check with your counselor and let you know when you're approved to apply.  
  3. Apply for apprenticeship opportunities:  Students apply for an apprenticeship like they would a job, interview with the business and hopefully receive a job offer!  Apprenticeships can be competitive! 
    • CareerWise Colorado Hiring Hub:  For CareerWise apprenticeships, students create an online Student Profile in the Hiring Hub and upload a resume (optional, but recommended). Once approved by the WBL Specialist, students can then apply for available positions. Students can create their profile now and then submit applications for positions as they are announced throughout the fall and spring. Apply early for best opportunity. 
  4. Register for Course and Next Steps:  Once hired by the employer for an apprenticeship, students will then meet with their counselor to register for apprenticeship as part of their course schedule. The Work-Based Learning Specialist will connect with you to establish check-ins and coursework requirements. For CareerWise apprenticeships, you will also participate in a mandatory Apprentice Orientation prior to beginning your apprenticeship.

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact a member of the TSD Work-Based Learning Team