Learn practical skills while earning a nationally recognized industry credential.

What is apprenticeship?

Apprenticeship is an employer-based program that helps workers learn specialized skills needed in today’s work environment, combining on-the-job learning with related classroom instruction. Students earn nationally recognized credentials, while employers develop a talented team and close the skills gap.

Many people start apprenticeships immediately after graduating from high school. They also work well for veterans leaving active-duty military service, those looking to change careers, or people whose jobs are being replaced by technology.

The goal of Apprenticeship Wayne at Wayne Community College is to help connect and support employers and apprentices. Today’s apprenticeships cover a wide range of industries and occupations. Large and small companies across North Carolina and around the world use apprenticeship to train their employees and build a skilled workforce.

Employers with apprenticeships at Wayne Community College

  • Bridgestone Tires of Wilson
  • Franklin Baking Company, LLC
  • Linamar Forgings Carolina, Inc.
  • Mt. Olive Pickle Company, Inc.
  • North Carolina Manufacturing, Inc.
  • Prolec-GE Waukesha, Inc.
  • Smithfield Foods, Inc.
  • Wayne County Government
  • Butterball
  • Coker Feed Mill
  • Caterpillar
  • Deacon Jones Auto Group
  • Team Chevrolet of Goldsboro
  • Jackson and Sons
  • Carolina Comfort & Air
  • Baker Mechanical
  • Wayne UNC Health
  • Wayne County Public Schools
  • AP Emissions
  • U.S. Foam & Etch
  • Goshen Engineering
  • Pitt Electric

We are adding new employers all the time. If you are an employer, let us know what type of opportunities interest you.

Benefits of apprenticeships

Both employers and apprentices (students) benefit from an apprenticeship program.

Students benefit with paid work-based learning and associated classroom learning as they earn nationally recognized credentials.

Employers benefit with a well-trained workforce, improved loyalty, and reduced turnover.

Learn more about the benefits below.

Students, Parents, and Influencers

Apprenticeships are a great alternative pathway to a successful career. Benefits of apprenticeship include:

  • Hands-on learning and job-related classroom or technical training provided
  • Wages that increase as new skills are learned
  • Earn national credentials, certifications, or college degrees
  • Jump-start your career, supporting yourself and your family while learning
  • Local employers offering apprenticeships give you the opportunity for a career close to home

Not every student wants to immediately head off to a university to earn a 4-year degree. For students that prefer hands-on learning, want to go right to work, prefer to stay closer to family, or would like their education partly or fully paid for, apprenticeship can be the right choice. In some cases, employers pay for 100% of the training costs; in others, the community colleges work with employers to obtain grant funding that covers these costs.

We often have parents or guardians say apprenticeship sounds too good to be true. It’s not. Apprenticeship is a win-win for employers and students.

Most apprenticeships range from one to four years, with the apprentice earning a nationally recognized credential (or journeyperson’s certificate) after completing the program. The training programs are structured, with most programs including both hands-on and classroom education. Apprentices are paid for learning hours and work hours based on a scale that includes wage increases at specific achievement points.

For high school students who have an interest in the specific field and want to work for the employer full- or part-time. The pre-apprentices are paid and are often offered full apprenticeships upon graduation from high school.

Registered or full apprenticeships
For students who have selected their career pathway and want to train in all aspects of the occupation as they work full- or part-time. Registered apprenticeships also provide a wage scale that increases based on experience and skills learned.

If you are a student or parent interested in learning more about apprenticeship opportunities in Wayne County and the surrounding area, contact us today!


ApprenticeshipNC, North Carolina’s apprenticeship organization, has one goal in mind: To help employers build a skilled workforce through on-the-job learning and related classroom instruction. Your ApprenticeshipNC team of dedicated consultants coordinate with your team and Wayne Community College to develop a custom registered apprenticeship program that meets your specific needs. Some of the benefits include:

  • Reduced turnover & heightened loyalty
  • Increased productivity & employee engagement
  • Apprenticeships work for businesses of all sizes
  • Training supported by your local community college
  • Reduced search and recruitment costs
  • Improved workforce diversity
  • Assistance with grants to cover education and other costs

ApprenticeshipNC helps workers learn specialized skills needed in today’s work environment. With an employer-driven model, we help combine on-the-job learning with related classroom instruction.

Apprenticeship Wayne at Wayne Community College works with local employers to customize classroom training to meet employer needs and supplement work-based learning. This collaborative effort enables employers to train employees to fill specific roles. We may:

  • Provide crucial support, such as curriculum development, and deliver related instruction to apprentices
  • Help develop curricula that allow apprentices to earn diplomas and certifications upon completion
  • Offer grant funding available to pay for education assistance for specific industries
  • Act as a resource partner for employers in providing the education for apprenticeship
  • Become a resource for potential financial aid for apprentices

The NC General Assembly recently approved $12 million in funding to expand apprenticeship in the state (Session Law 2021-180 Section 6.14). The $12M is being used to provide funds for employers to add new apprentices ages 16-25 based on the following criteria:

  • Small businesses within Tier 1 & 2 counties in sectors with high-demand careers (no more than 500 employees in the location)
  • $2,000 per year for employers to onboard and train apprentices
  • $2,500 per year for apprentice’s tuition, books, and fees
  • Up to $15/hr. (non-high school) and up to $14/hr. (high school) salary match (50% reimbursement)
  • Apprentices must be hired effective July 1, 2022, or later (you may register your apprenticeship program prior to 7/1 and enroll apprentices after that date to take advantage of the funding)
  • Funds must be obligated by December 31, 2024, and spent by December 31, 2026
  • Funding will be coordinated through the NC Community College System
  • Pre-apprenticeships are not eligible for these incentives

The high demand careers include, but are not limited to, the following occupation codes (please contact Kristie Sauls, WCC Apprenticeship Coordinator, at 919.739.7063 or wcc-apprenticeship@waynecc.edu, or ApprenticeshipNC consultant for specifics):

  • Architecture and Engineering (17-0000)
  • Education (25-0000)
  • Healthcare Technicians (29-0000)
  • Healthcare Support (31-0000)
  • Protective Service (33-0000)
  • Food Preparation and Service (35-0000)
  • Office and Administrative Support (43-0000)
  • Construction and Extraction (47-0000)
  • Installation, Maintenance, and Repairs (49-0000)
  • Production (51-0000)
  • Transportation (53-0000)

If you are ready to learn more about apprenticeship, let us know. You can also reach out directly to Kristie Sauls, Apprenticeship Coordinator at Wayne Community College, at 919.739.7063 or wcc-apprenticeship@waynecc.edu. We will coordinate a meeting with the apprenticeship consultant. Optionally, you may visit ApprenticeshipNC.com, find your apprenticeship consultant, and work with them to set up your program.

Ready to get started?

Submit the form below to be contacted by our Apprenticeship Coordinator!