Similar to Urban Development, masonry is vital to support the growth and expansion of a community. The design and planning of creating a community and businesses can only go so far if you don’t have people with the necessary skills to actually build the infrastructure. Jobs in masonry are vital as they will always be needed. If you’re interested in a career that allows you to work with your hands and that will always be in demand, read on for how you can learn more about studying Masonry in the U.S.
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Jump to:2-Year Degree 4-Year Degree Beyond a 4-Year Degree
You can do many things in masonry with a high school degree or less. These careers allow you to begin a career in this field with little to no experience and/or credential. You can learn more about these careers in the Vocational Training section.
Some schools have career maps to show you how you can progress from studying to working at the highest level in that career field. Here is a career map for building construction.
Source: Broward College (Fort Lauderdale, FL, U.S.A.)
A four-year degree is not needed for a career in masonry, but you can continue on to get advanced degrees to build your career. Careers in the same field that a foundation in masonry can lead to include architectural drafter, civil engineer technician, civil engineer, construction manager, landscape artichect, or surveyor. These are all careers you can read about in previous blog posts: Architecture in the U.S. and Urban Development in the U.S. Courses you would take for these programs would include urban and regional planning, introduction to public and community service, city planning and community development, mapping, urban sociology, history and theory of architecture, digital architecture, architectural design, and materials & methods of construction.
Beyond a 4-Year Degree
To work in masonry, a degree or credential beyond vocational training is not required. With an advanced degree like a master’s or doctorate, you can become an architect, civil engineer, or geographer. Examples of your courses would include bridge engineering, steel structures, masonry & timber, structural reliability, dynamics of structures, and advanced structures mechanics. Advanced degrees can provide opportunities for internships, independent studies, practicums, and community-based projects. Many of these programs also have a thesis or dissertation as a requirement where you will have to conduct research and possibly defend your research.
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The following are technical routes you can take to achieve a career in masonry and urban development:
Jump to:Apprenticeships & Internships Vocational Training
Apprenticeships & Internships
Apprenticeships provide on-the-job training and education while you work. This can look like working or volunteering with little experience but being trained to improve your skills. Not only are you learning the necessary job skills, but also the demands, hours, ways to interact with the public, procedures, and problems that usually arise on the job. This is an all-encompassing experience. Apprenticeship and internship opportunities in masonry and urban development can be found through internet searches, networking, or through your school. These may exist at construction companies, city planning departments, and other local and national organizations.
If there is a business, organization, or person whose work interests you, ask them for the opportunity to intern or shadow them to learn more about the field and career. This is a great way to show your interest in the field and secure future opportunities to gain experience.
There are several occupations in the construction field that do not require a degree that would allow you to get a start in masonry. These include brickmasons and blockmasons, cement masons and concrete finishers, stonemasons, plasterers, brickmason and stonemason helpers, carpenters, or construction laborers. These careers do not require any degrees but will require hands-on experience to learn the trade. They can also lead to high-paying opportunities from meeting the demands of the economy.
Try not to decline unpaid opportunities especially if you have no experience. Eventually, you may become a paid worker. Through volunteering, you are gaining valuable hands-on experience that can be recorded on your résumé/CV, and you are building a network that you can lean on once you’ve elevated in your career. Ask different departments on campus about job shadowing, internship, or volunteer opportunities on campus or in the surrounding community.
You can review the Minnesota State CAREERwise website to explore careers similar to Urban Development in the Architecture & Construction career cluster. Here are more resources to learn more about careers in Masonry:
- U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook: Construction Manager: Similar Occupations | Masonry Workers: Similar Occupations
- Professional Associations: Associated Builders and Contractors | Brick Industry Association | Canada Masonry Centre | Masonry Institute of America | National Association of Women in Construction | Occupational Safety & Health Administration | The Masonry Society
- Publications: Masonry Magazine
Check with your institution of interest to find out more about their admissions application, program requirements, and the best way to map out your future for studying masonry.
Unsure about what Masonry is? Read our explanatory post here.