Join Bridget Quinn for an in-depth discussion in this video What carpenters do, part of Skilled Trades: Construction Apprenticeship Foundations.
- Carpenters work on pretty much any type of structure. They build the highways and bridges you use, hospitals and airports, office buildings, schools, retail, and restaurants. Carpenters have one of the biggest scopes of work on a job site. We are usually the first ones to a new job, and we're usually the last ones to leave. We do everything from build concrete forms, pour concrete. We frame walls with steel and wood. We install the doors, we install the hardware. We install everything from paper towel holders to soap dispensers. We manage jobs. A lot of carpenters are foremen and superintendents and crew leads. So our scope of work out on a job site is first swing of the hammer to the last little detailed punch list item. - So when you think about the process of building, the first thing that you have to do is you have to establish the building lines, right? So you have to establish the elevation and grades of the building, and you need a lot of construction math to be able to do that. And so that's where we start with the carpenters. - One of the things that I talk to my apprentices about is the professional level of being a carpenter. I am a professional carpenter, much like a professional biologist, a professional doctor, a professional lawyer. My professional level is the same as any other type of career. This is something I chose and I trained for four years. I worked out in the field. And this is a lifelong career choice for me. - If you like building things with your hands, and you like the opportunity to work outside, and you really want to be in a job where you can mark your progress on a daily basis and look back and build things in the natural-build environment that'll be landmarks forever, you should come check out carpentry. - And one of the most important things is I cannot lose my sense of passion. I can't lose the fact that I love working with my hands. I like being around people. I like being a leader. I like listening and following other people's good ideas. So the thing that keeps me going every single day is having a core love of what I'm doing.