Is becoming a stonemason right for me?
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How to become a Stonemason
Becoming a stonemason typically involves a combination of education, training, and on-the-job experience. Here are some general steps you can take to become a stonemason:
- Obtain a High School Diploma Or Equivalent: While a high school diploma or equivalent is not always required, it can be helpful to have a basic foundation in math, science, and communication skills.
- Complete a Masonry Program: Many vocational schools and community colleges offer masonry programs, which can provide you with the skills and knowledge needed to become a professional stonemason. These programs can vary in length, but typically take one to two years to complete.
- Participate in an Apprenticeship: Apprenticeships provide hands-on training and experience under the guidance of experienced stonemasons. They can last several years and typically involve a combination of on-the-job training and classroom instruction.
- Gain Experience On The Job: Once you have completed your education and apprenticeship, you can begin working as a stonemason. Gaining experience on the job is important for honing your skills and developing your expertise in the field.
- Obtain Certification: Certification can help you stand out to potential employers or clients (see below).
Certification for stonemasons is not always required, but it can be a way to demonstrate your expertise and professionalism in the field. Here are some certification options available for stonemasons:
- National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER): The NCCER offers a certification program for stonemasons, which includes written and performance assessments. The program covers topics such as safety, materials, tools and equipment, layout, cutting, and finishing.
- Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA): The MCAA offers a certification program for stonemasons that covers topics such as installation, repair, and restoration of natural stone. The program includes both a written and hands-on examination.
- Stone Foundation: The Stone Foundation offers a certification program for stonemasons that focuses on traditional stonework techniques. The program includes written and practical exams, as well as a portfolio review.
- International Masonry Institute (IMI): The IMI offers a certification program for stonemasons that covers topics such as cutting and shaping stone, installing stone, and repairing and restoring historic stone structures. The program includes both written and hands-on exams.