NCTriangle Apprenticeship Program   ... the degree that pays ... the other four-year degree

Frequently Asked Questions


What is an apprenticeship?

An apprenticeship combines on-the-job training with formal lectures and hands-on learning. NCTAP apprenticeships are based on the best examples found in Europe, especially Austria, Germany and Switzerland.


What is a Journeyman?

The name for the graduate of an apprenticeship program such as NCTAP, "Journeyman" is derived from the German "Wanderschaft", the age-old practice of apprentices traveling ('wandern') between several Master Craftsman during their training.Within NCTAP, apprentices will gain a similar variety of skills from their employer and while attending classes at Wake Tech.


What is a Master Craftsman?

The ultimate achievement of a skilled tradesman, a Journeyman can only achieve this distinction following years of work under another Master Craftsman and successful completion of an array of written, oral and skills examinations. In many countries, only a Master Craftsman may be permitted to establish a business in his trade, assuring a high standard.


What is NCTAP?
A partnership between NC Triangle Region industry, community colleges, high
schools (public, charter, private, and home) and the North Carolina Apprenticeship and Training Bureau.


What are the outcomes of NCTAP?
A high school diploma, an Associate's Degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology at Wake Tech (paid by your employer), a Journeyman's Certificate, four years of paidwork experience and in most cases a guaranteed job.


What skills are learned in NCTAP?

Apprentices will receive training at Wake Tech in the following areas: machining, welding, sheet metal fabrication, computer controls & automation (PLC), machine assembly and repair, plastic molding/forming, composites, electrical circuitry and electronics, all part of the Associate's Degree (AAS) in Mechanical Engineering Technology they earn. While at work you will receive further training specific to your employer's needs, which may include certification in these skills, These skills are in great demand in the U.S. and abroad.


How long does it take?

Starting in the last year of high school, an NCTAP apprenticeship takes four years. NCTAP apprentices start their careers as rising high school juniors, years ahead of those who pursue a traditional four-year college degree before gaining real-world skills.


How much will I be paid as an NCTAP apprentice?

NCTAP apprentices are paid a competitive hourly wage which increases annually. Bonuses and benefits are typically included but these vary by employer.


What if I want to earn a four-year degree later?

NCTAP apprentices earn a two-year Associates Degree(AAS) in Mechanical Engineering Technology, which provides an excellent basis for many four-year degrees.   Credits earned at Wake Tech are transferable to most four-year colleges. Many employers support continued studies and it is not unusual for former apprentices to earn further degrees.


Is this something new?
No!  Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Henry Ford, Andrew Carnegie, Thomas Edison, the Wright Brothers and many others entered their careers through apprenticeships.
  NCTAP is returning this time-tested means of career development to the Triangle