Apprenticeship Program Information

PHCC-IA Apprenticeship Assessment Testing

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PHCC of Iowa's Apprenticeship Program offers new students* the opportunity to show their skills by taking our Assessment Tests. This process is intended for apprentices who may be more advanced, but have not yet completed apprenticeship training. The Assessment Tests are written exams intended to gauge your employee's current knowledge and place them appropriately in our program. 

The potential exists for new students to test out of Years 1, 2, and 3. They are required to attend Year 4. Assessment Tests cost $150 per test and students will take them consecutively on the testing day. For example, if they pass the Year 1 exam, they become eligible to take the Year 2 exam or begin the class at Year 2. If they pass the Year 2 exam, they become eligible to take the Year 3 exam or begin the class at Year 3. If they pass the Year 3 exam, they become eligible to begin the class at Year 4. Registration fees for Assessment Tests must be paid up front, however, if a student registers for multiple exams and does not pass one, resulting in the inability to take the remaining exams, they will be refunded for any tests they did not take.

Apprentices are allowed to bring the following materials for testing:
Plumbing Students: 1) A non-programmable calculator, 2) A code book (UPC 2012 or 2015 edition), 3) Mathematics for Plumbers & Pipefitters Book
HVAC Students: 1) A non-programmable calculator, 2) A code Book (IMC or UMC, 2012 or 2015 edition)
Please note: Students are only permitted to go through the Assessment Testing Process one time. After they have taken the tests, they will be placed into the appropriate level of apprenticeship and must complete the program from that point forward.

*Assessment Testing is available only to newly enrolled students. Current apprentices are not able to test out of the program.

PHCC Workforce Resource Guide
What is the number one asset of a successful business? Trained and qualified employees. Find out how to conquer the workforce challenge in this resource guide.

Apprenticeship - The Other Four Year Degree
This article was recently in the Des Moines register and makes some great points about why apprenticeship might be a good path for YOU!

The Next Generation of HVAC Installers
Check out this study by the HVACR Workforce Development Foundation



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What is PHCC Apprenticeship?


Why Apprenticeship? Learn About the Skills Gap
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Apprenticeship Program News

Registering for Apprenticeship

2016 Apprenticeship Registration is now closed! You can still register your apprentice with DOL to gain "Apprentice" status though - contact PHCC of Iowa today to find out how this works!

JUST STARTING ON THE APPRENTICESHIP JOURNEY? Both the company and the apprentice have to become registered with the Department of Labor. When you join PHCC-IA and put someone into our program, we coordinate and submit the majority of this paperwork for you!

Contact Randi Malone at 515-868-0400 to get details about how to sign up and enroll apprentices today!


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Apprentices Participate in STEM Day at Kirkwood Community College - January 2015

Apprentices spend a lot of time learning – from books, from instructors, and mostly from their Journeyman. This year’s fourth year plumbing apprentices in Cedar Rapids were given a unique opportunity to turn the tables and become “Journeyman” for a day with their own apprentices – middle school girls. Each year, Kirkwood Community College hosts what’s known as a Girls STEM Day. This day is organized with the goal in mind of introducing the trades to female students earlier on in their school career and to encourage them to examine the possibility of obtaining a job in the trades for themselves one day.

The fourth year apprentices were given the task of instructing and assisting the students in soldering a frame for a photo holder out of copper piping. This included being responsible for teaching the students how to examine the specs, accurately measure the copper piping, and use the torch to solder the pieces together. Through their excellent direction, all of the girls’ projects came out successful and passed the pressure test that was required to receive an “okay” on the project.

The PHCC-IA Apprenticeship program is proud of the fourth year apprentices and the outstanding job that they did as “journeyman” for the day!

Visit Kirkwood’s Stem Day Instagram Page for more photos:

Background Information About the Licensing Law & Apprenticeship

In 2007, the Iowa Legislature enacted "The Iowa Plumber and Mechanical Professional Licensing Act,” a law that created statewide licensing for contractors performing work in the plumbing, HVAC (heating, ventilation, air conditioning), hydronics and refrigeration areas.
Commencing on January 1st, 2010 all new  technicians working in any of these four areas will need to complete a four-year Department of Labor (DOL) approved apprenticeship program and pass a state exam in order to obtain their state license. PHCC operates a 4-year registered apprenticeship program for both Plumbing and Heating/ Cooling technicians. Our apprenticeship program is recognized and certified by the United States Department of Labor/Bureau of Apprenticeship Training and by license and code authorities that utilize the DOL/BAT standards. Students participating in a Department of Labor apprenticeship program must meet two key requirements during each of the four years: (1) 144 classroom hours and (2) 2,000 on-the-job earning hours. Participants in the PHCC Program will attend face-to-face classes in Cedar Rapids or Des Moines. The Cedar Rapids class will meet for one full work-week in January and a second full week in May. The Des Moines class will meet once a month, starting in October, for six Friday-Saturday sessions. Both classes will be supplemented with online training and testing to meet the 144 classroom hour requirement. The student’s employer will be responsible for helping the student meet the 2,000 hour on-the-job requirement.
Questions ?
If you have questions or wish to register, please contact PHCC of Iowa at 515-282-8192.