What’s it like to be a BAA carpentry apprentice?


Covid may have slowed us down, but the construction boom is far from over.

With plenty of new residential developments and the Victorian government spending big on infrastructure and affordable housing, there’s never been a better time to become a chippy.

Here we show you how a carpentry apprenticeship can lead you to a rewarding career as a chippy.

About the carpenter apprentice

If you want to become a carpenter in Victoria, you have to do an apprenticeship.

In an apprenticeship, you study a Cert III – Carpentry at the same time as working for an employer.

As an apprentice, you can earn a wage while you learn all the skills you need on the job.

A lot of apprentices who complete their certificates go on to gain full time work with the same employer they had their apprenticeship with. 

Because of this, doing an apprenticeship is a good way to get your first job or take your first step into the construction industry.  

About the Cert III – Carpentry 

As a carpenter apprentice, you’ll study your  CPC30220 Certificate III in Carpentry (CPC30220) while doing on the job training.

This means you’ll work full time for a builder and complete online coursework during the evenings.

Your coursework includes a mix of videos, activities, questionnaires, discussions and more.

Most of the coursework is online, giving you the ultimate flexibility to complete your studies when and where it suits you, whether that’s after work on weeknights or during the evening.

You’ll also do assignments, both online and in person, and your trainer will assess you while you’re on the job.

What jobs can you get?

Once you finish your cert 3 in carpentry and your apprenticeship, you’ll be a fully qualified carpenter.

You could continue working for the same employer as you had while doing your apprenticeship, but as a qualified chippy, you’ll have a higher wage.

You could also go on to get your builders licence and start your own business. 

For this, we recommend doing the CPC40120 Certificate IV in Building and Construction (Building) which teaches you all the essentials for running a construction business. 

The cert 4 in building and construction even has a free mentorship program to help you pass the builders registration test.

You could even go on to do a diploma or a bachelor’s degree or specialise in another area of construction.

What to expect from a Cert III – Carpentry

As a carpentry apprentice, you’ll learn in a very hands-on way by working full time and studying part time.

If you like to get your hands dirty and dive right into things, a carpenter apprenticeship might be right for you.

You’ll also have a trainer from a building school visit you while you’re at work from time to time.

Your trainer will check in with you to see how you’re progressing with your schooling and answer any questions you may have.

If you want to choose a trusted school for your certificate III, look no further than Builders Academy Australia–or as our students like to call us, BAA.

What apprentices say

We’re one of the biggest construction schools in Victoria and have trained hundreds of tradies in Melbourne and regional Victoria.

But don’t take our word for it. Here’s what our happy carpentry students and graduates have to say.

Tammy – Apprentice

Hi, My name is Tammy and I’m currently studying my Cert III in Carpentry. So I work for J Young Building. My course is all on-site based so I work full-time with my boss James. Then my trainer will come out once a month to make sure I’m getting all my schoolwork done. I’m not having any problems with anything, I’m opening up new units and progressing steadily. 

My trainer Ralph, he’s a great guy. He’s easy-going, he’s relaxed. He ensures that I get the proper resources for my schooling. I get to see him each month to check up on me and make sure everything’s going right. So in my course, I’ve learnt how to build a house from floor to ceiling, all of the little things that go into a lot of people don’t see here. 

My career goal is to someday hopefully become a site supervisor or hopefully grow my own business. The reason I love being a tradie is because it’s hands-on. There’s no better job.


Gemma – Apprentice

I’m Gemma. I’m a fourth year carpentry apprentice. I study at Builders Academy Australia. I have finished all my schooling. As I got older, I studied woodwork at school and that’s when I knew that I wanted to become a carpenter. It’s not hard to be a woman in the industry. You’re going to have your ups and downs, that’s going to come with it all but you’ll learn ways how to overcome stuff like that. It’s good to see other women coming to support each other instead of soldiering on all by ourselves, I suppose.

I’m saying that Builders Academy has been amazing, so easy. Teachers are always so helpful and supportive and always there when you need them. Course works have always been excellent, just online all the time, no days off work. It’s just been amazing, really.

I feel like I’m very proud of where I am. Can’t believe how far I’ve come. But it’s been a really good experience, something that I’ll cherish forever.

Andrejs with Trainer George

Andrejs – Qualified chippy

My name is Andrejs Everett and I just completed Cert III in Carpentry. I started when I was 27 so, I had a bit of an interesting career before that I played AFL for 10 years so yeah, a little bit different it was good but trust me I really enjoy what I’m doing now. 

It was actually my partner that time, she sort of said “You enjoy building, why don’t you try a trade?” I tried a couple of different ones, plumbing and electrical, but I actually really enjoyed getting my hands dirty and building with timber. So, I went through a couple of different avenues and found a good boss in Walrus Constructions and really enjoyed it. BAA took me onboard when George, my trainer, took over. He sort of got me over to BAA which was really good and since then, helped me through it a lot. 

Is a Cert III – Carpentry right for you? 

If you want to start out work in the building and construction industry, a certificate 3 in carpentry is the first step. 

Whether you want to work full time for a builder, start your own business, or even do further study, the certificate 3 is a great starting point. 

By doing a cert III and an apprenticeship, you’ll learn all the essential skills for becoming a carpenter while earning a wage. 

It’s no wonder so many people believe doing an apprenticeship is a great way to earn qualifications.Thinking of doing a CPC30220 Certificate III in Carpentry (CPC30220)? Give us a call today on 1300 534 363 (LEGEND) or complete the online form, and one of our course advisors will get in touch soon.