What does a Masonry Worker do?
Masonry workers use concrete, concrete blocks, bricks, and manmade or natural stone to build fences, walls, walkways, and other masonry structures. They lift heavy materials and must bend, stand, and kneel for long periods of time, therefore, the work is physically demanding. Most masons work outdoors so inclement weather may reduce the hours of work activity which is usually on a full time basis.
How to Become a Masonry Worker
Masonry workers typically have a high school diploma or the equivalent and learn their skills under experienced workers on-the-job. There are technical schools that offer programs in basic masonry and operate both independently and in conjunction with apprenticeship training. The apprenticeship program earns one credit towards an associate’s degree. Candidates may take courses with on-the-job training or may opt to take courses before taking employment.
The apprenticeship program lasts 3-4 years and for each year of the program the student is required to complete at least 144 hours of related technical instruction. In addition to this, 2,000 hours of paid on-the-job training is needed.
Many groups sponsor apprenticeship programs, such as contractor associations and unions. Many offer preference to veterans. To qualify for an apprenticeship program one must be 18 years old or older, hold a high school diploma or the equivalent, and be physically able to do strenuous work.
Job Description of a Masonry Worker
The duties of a masonry worker may vary depending on the type of job he or she performs, however, one typically has the job of calculating the materials needed for the work by reading drawings or blueprints. They use the plans to lay out patterns, foundations, or forms. They must cut or break materials to the proper size and mix grout or mortor for spreading into a foundation or slab.
A masonry worker needs to construct corners and align structures horizontally and vertically. He or she has the duties of filling expansion joints with the correct caulking materials. They must keep trowels, hand tools, and power tools clean.