Advice for would-be apprentice plumber
Hi everyone, great site, really impressed with the knowledge you guys have. This website came up every time I googled anything to do with plumbing so I've been reading articles for about a week or so but this is my first post.
I'm 22 years old, sick of working at my current job (call center supervisor). I'm good with my hands (father was a mechanic, I spent a lot of time at his shop messing around with various tools and things, no stranger to getting dirty). I live in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada) and there's a fairly substantial demand for skilled tradespeople across the country. The local college (Red River College) offers a 5 month certification program with apprenticeship opportunities (not trying to advertise: this is the page on the course they offer: http://me.rrc.mb.ca/Catalogue/Progra...gCode=PLU5F-CT ) , with books and so on it costs about $3600.
I'm really looking for advice from guys who've been doing it for a long time. I realize my inexperience is not a good thing (some guys who've worked with/for their dads since they were kids have been basically brought in this world) but I really want a career which will give me skills which are always going to be in demand (people are always going to need water flowing in their homes and go #1/#2 right?) Basically I'm willing to work hard to learn the trade, but don't know much about it. I want to provide for my family by having stable, skilled long term employment. What's the best way to get started? What should I avoid doing, what should I be doing, what are things/bad habits I should watch out for, etc. I've been thinking about this for a long time and I wont lie, part of what attracts me is the money: working overtime to install pipe at a new commercial property, maybe retrofitting the plumbing on a reserve for the government, that kind of thing, but I know after this course I'd be starting out on the bottom of the totem pole anywhere I go I'm not in it to rip people off or do hack work, just to work hard and make an honest living. Later on in life I'd like to start my own company or become a building inspector for the government.
Can someone help me out? Tell me how you got started, what can I do right now to broaden my knowledge base so that when I take this course I'm not just some johnny-come-lately with his thumb in his behind. Any and all advice, stories, information etc is definitely appreciated, from anyone.