Shoe Repair Degrees and Certificate Program Information
The most common form of training in shoe repair is through 2-year apprenticeships, as shoe repair degree and certificate programs do not exist. Shoe repair courses may also be offered at some community colleges as part of their career and adult education classes.
Apprenticeships are most often offered through a shoe repair shop and provide real-world application. Those pursuing shoe repair at a community college rather than through an apprenticeship can expect courses to be similar as courses in areas such as cake decorating, keyboard skills development and CPR. Individuals interested in shoe repair should have strong mechanical skills, the ability to work extensively with their hands, and artistic aptitude.
- Program Options: Apprenticeship; community college courses
- Required Skills: Good dexterity; an artistic-eye; mechanical skills; ability to repair as per customer's request
- Program Length: Approximately 2 years
Shoe Repair Career Training: Apprenticeship
Shoe repair apprenticeship programs offer hands-on experience, as individuals learn while working with an experienced craftsman in his/her shop. A typical shoe repair apprenticeship lasts two years, with the main focus placed on working with leather. Working with a variety of tools and leathers, students slowly gain mastery over the individual tasks of shoe repair. Training includes:
- Shaping, cutting, and sewing of different leathers
- Mastery of industry-specific tools
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Though wages vary depending on a worker's speed and skills, the average hourly wage for shoe and leather workers and repairers was $12.42 in 2014, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. At that time, about 7,710 people were employed in shoe repair and leather work. The BLS predicted that between 2010 and 2020 the number of shoe machine operators would decrease by approximately 53 percent. However, due to the recent recession, some workers in the shoe repair industry may actually encounter a spike in business caused by consumers wishing to have their shoes repaired instead of regarding them as disposable.