Skip main navigation

Outdated or Unsupported Browser Detected
DWD's website uses the latest technology. This makes our site faster and easier to use across all devices. Unfortunatley, your browser is out of date and is not supported. An update is not required, but it is strongly recommended to improve your browsing experience. To update Internet Explorer to Microsoft Edge visit their website.

An Introduction to Youth Apprenticeship for Students and Parents

A Youth Apprenticeship is a one or two year “earn while you learn” program for high school juniors and seniors consisting of work and related classroom instruction in a chosen occupation. Training is received on-the-job where the employer teaches the skills of the occupation. This is augmented by taking courses that are related to that occupation. No matter what the youth apprentice decides to do after high school, they will be more prepared for success because of their apprenticeship!

The Benefits of Youth Apprenticeship


From day one, you will earn a paycheck for your work.


Receive practical on-the-job training in your chosen occupation.


You will learn from both your job and classroom related instruction.


Youth Apprenticeship can lead to a fulfilling, long-term career.


Earn an industry recognized completion certificate.

Youth Apprenticeship Pathways

Youth Apprenticeship (YA) opportunities are organized into 13 broad YA Program Areas. Within each Program Area are a number of more specific Occupational Pathways. Click on the Program Area icons below to find out more about your options!

How Do I Apply?

  1. Determine the Right YA Opportunity for You

    Consider the various career options above and speak to your school counselor, teachers, and parents. Think about whether you would like to work outside or inside, with other people or more by yourself. Exploring your options and preferences will help you find a good YA program match for you!

  2. Learn More and Apply

    Identify the YA Regional Coordinator in your area and talk to them to learn more about the program, its requirements, and benefits. Decide if a Youth Apprenticeship is the right opportunity for you, and if it is, apply!

  3. Interview with Employers in Your Chosen Industry

    Once potential employers have been identified, prepare for your interview. This is a great chance to hone your communication and self-advocacy skills! Your YA Coordinator can help with suggestions and interview tips.

  4. Participate in Employer Orientations, Onboardings, and Safety Trainings

    After a successful interview, you will likely participate in an onsite orientation where, among many other things, you will get to meet your new workplace mentor, work out your schedule, and learn more about workplace expectations.

  5. Participate in Regular Progress Reviews

    As you are learning on the job, your employer will regularly review your progress with you to ensure your success in the program.

  6. Complete Classroom and Worksite YA Requirements

    Upon completion of your Youth Apprenticeship you will receive a state Certificate of Occupational Proficiency from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.

Additional Information & YA Program Questions

Contact DWD staff who oversee the YA at, or find your YA Regional Coordinator to explore options in your local area!