Frequently Asked Questions

The Apprentice School

Question Answer
How is the BIW Apprentice School different from a two- or four-year college? The registered apprenticeship offered by the school is a full-time job. Apprentices are selected and hired into the program as vacancies occur. On-the-job training and trade theory courses in assigned shipbuilding disciplines begin immediately after hire. An apprentice’s work week is devoted to rigorous academic and trade theory course work and on-the-job training in shipbuilding trades. Academic course work begins within the first six months of apprenticeship.
What shipbuilding trades are offered? An apprentice is placed in a shipbuilding discipline selected during the application process and works in that trade for the duration of his or her apprenticeship. Advanced disciplines are for current apprentices selected for these programs and are not available upon hire.
Do apprentices graduate with a college degree? All apprentices graduate with a certificate of apprenticeship. Apprentices who excel in the Basic Technical Education Curriculum and their shipbuilding work may be considered for an advanced discipline, where they complete strategically timed, on-the-job training and academic coursework toward an associate degree offered in partnership with Maine Maritime Academy.
Does the BIW Apprentice School accept transfer credit from an accredited two- or four-year college? Transfer credit may be awarded for some courses based on official transcript grades from accredited post-secondary education institutions and on math and English placement test results. Transfer credit is also considered based upon the course work requirements of individual advanced disciplines.
How long does it take to complete an apprenticeship? The average apprenticeship is completed in two- to four-years.
Are apprentice graduates required to work for Bath Iron Works after graduation? While many Apprentice School alumni go on to enjoy lucrative and fulfilling careers with Bath Iron Works, continued employment with BIW after graduation is not required.