Is becoming a plasterer right for me?

The first step to choosing a career is to make sure you are actually willing to commit to pursuing the career. You don’t want to waste your time doing something you don’t want to do. If you’re new here, you should read about:

What do plasterers do?
Career Satisfaction
Are plasterers happy with their careers?
What are plasterers like?

Still unsure if becoming a plasterer is the right career path? to find out if this career is right for you. Perhaps you are well-suited to become a plasterer or another similar career!

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How to become a Plasterer

To become a plasterer, follow these general steps:

  • Obtain a High School Diploma or Equivalent: A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required to pursue a career as a plasterer. It provides a basic educational foundation and demonstrates your ability to learn and follow instructions.
  • Gain Relevant Experience: While not always mandatory, gaining practical experience in construction or related trades can be highly beneficial. Consider seeking entry-level positions or apprenticeships with construction companies, general contractors, or plastering firms. This experience will help you develop basic skills, learn about construction practices, and familiarize yourself with the plastering trade.
  • Complete a Plastering Apprenticeship Program: Participating in a formal apprenticeship program is an excellent way to receive comprehensive training and hands-on experience in the plastering trade. Apprenticeships typically last three to four years and combine on-the-job training with classroom instruction. Look for apprenticeship programs offered by local trade unions, contractor associations, or vocational schools. These programs provide a structured curriculum that covers essential plastering skills, safety practices, blueprint reading, and more.
  • Obtain Necessary Certifications and Licenses: Depending on your location, you may need to obtain specific certifications or licenses to work as a plasterer. Check with your local government or licensing boards to understand the requirements in your area. For example, some states may require plasterers to hold a plastering contractor's license if they plan to work independently or start their own business.
  • Develop Skills and Knowledge: Continuously develop your skills and knowledge in the plastering trade. Stay updated on industry trends, techniques, and new materials through trade publications, workshops, or seminars. Networking with experienced plasterers can also provide valuable insights and opportunities for growth.
  • Consider Additional Education: While not mandatory, pursuing additional education in construction management or business administration can enhance your career prospects. Such knowledge can be beneficial if you aspire to advance into supervisory or managerial roles within the plastering industry.
  • Seek Employment or Start Your Own Business: Once you have gained the necessary skills, certifications, and experience, you can begin seeking employment with construction companies, plastering contractors, or self-employed plasterers. Alternatively, you may choose to start your own plastering business, which requires additional considerations such as obtaining necessary permits, insurance, and equipment.

There are certain certifications and credentials that can demonstrate your expertise and enhance your professional credibility as a plasterer. Here are some relevant certifications to consider:

  • Certified Plasterer (CP): The Certified Plasterer program, offered by the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry (AWCI), is designed to assess and recognize the skills and knowledge of plasterers. This certification covers various aspects of plastering, including material application, surface preparation, safety practices, and more.
  • EIFS Industry Professionals: If you specialize in working with Exterior Insulation and Finish Systems (EIFS), you can pursue certifications offered by organizations such as the EIFS Industry Members Association (EIMA) or the Northwest Wall and Ceiling Bureau (NWCB). These certifications demonstrate your expertise in EIFS installation, application, and system maintenance.
  • Construction Industry Training Council (CITC) Certifications: The CITC offers a range of certifications related to the construction industry, including plastering and drywall installation. These certifications validate your skills and knowledge in specific areas of the trade, such as plastering systems, drywall finishing, or decorative plasterwork.
  • Manufacturer-Specific Certifications: Some plaster product manufacturers offer certifications for contractors or installers who demonstrate proficiency in using their specific products. These certifications may focus on product knowledge, proper installation techniques, or specialized applications.