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Carpenters work with wood to construct, install, and repair houses and other buildings. They may also complete smaller projects, such as kitchen cabinets or doors. In addition, some carpenters work with other materials, such as fiberglass or drywall. While each project is different, all carpentry tasks involve manual labor. About 98.5% of carpenters are male.
While there are no formal education requirements to become a carpenter in the U.S., most carpenters have a high school diploma. To obtain training, aspiring carpenters may attend community college, technical college, vocational school, or study under a more experienced carpenter. Another option is to join an apprenticeship program, which takes 3-4 years to complete. After an apprenticeship, students become certified as journeymen. All these avenues allow students to become familiar with standard carpentry tools, procedures, and machines. Carpenters can also choose to earn additional certifications in specialty areas, such as scaffold building or pump work.
- Good hand-eye coordination – Aptitude for numbers – Physical fitness – Ability to follow instructions and read blueprints
While most carpenters work a standard 40-hour week, about 7% work part-time. The amount of work can fluctuate due to adverse weather conditions or injuries sustained on the job. Carpenters hold approximately 1.3 million jobs. About 32% of carpenters are self-employed. The number of job openings is expected to increase by 13% in the next decade, which is on par with the average for other occupations. The demand for carpenters with strong training and skills is expected to be good, and the best can advance to construction supervisors. However, the number of opportunities vary according to an area’s population growth, with more populous cities requiring more carpenters to meet people’s housing needs.The average carpenter earns $44,980 annually.