Career Definition for a Segmental Paver
Segmental paving is a specialization within the more well-known occupation of cement masonry. A segmental paver typically works with brick or cement pavers to create outdoor surfaces such as walkways and patios. The job of a segmental paver involves preparing a surface that is about to be paved. He or she accomplishes this task by framing out the area and leveling it with a material like sand or fine gravel and then cutting, dry-fitting and installing the individual pavers, which are typically made of brick or cement. The final step involves filling the spaces between the pavers with more sand or gravel and tamping the surface for a secure finish. A segmental paver nearly always works outdoors and is required to lift heavy materials and operate cutting equipment, which may be dangerous if used incorrectly.
|Education||3-4 year program apprenticeships and on-the-job-training|
|Job Skills||Physical fitness, ability to read blueprints, strong work ethic|
|Median Salary (2016)*||$33,530 (for segmental pavers)|
|Job Growth (2016-2026)*||12% (for segmental pavers)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Many segmental pavers begin their careers in the general construction field and acquire their specialization through on-the-job training; however, some contractors, union-management committees and trade associations sponsor apprenticeships that combine paid, on-the-job training with classroom instruction. These programs typically last 3-4 years, and applicants may be required to pass written and physical examinations before being accepted into them.
The daily work of a segmental paver is strenuous and requires a reasonable level of physical fitness. The ability to read blueprints or perform mechanical drawing may be helpful. Perhaps most importantly, a segmental paver should be dependable, have a strong work ethic and take pride in his or her craftsmanship.
Career and Economic Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov) projects employment in the segmental paving industry to grow at a rate of 12% from 2016-2026, which is faster than average. In 2016, the BLS placed the median annual wage for segmental pavers at $33,530.
Alternate Career Options
Similar careers to segmental paving include:
A terrazzo worker is a specialized kind of cement mason. In this physically demanding occupation, terrazzo workers prepare the surface to be worked on by setting the concrete forms, leveling the surface, and pouring the concrete; terrazzo workers then add a thin layer of marble chips, which they polish to a decorative finish. Terrazzo workers can apply this finish to patios, walkways, and floors. A high school diploma is required; aspiring terrazzo workers then complete several years of on-the-job training or an apprenticeship program. According to the BLS, the number of jobs for terrazzo workers is expected to increase 12% from 2016-2026. Terrazzo workers and finishers earned median pay of $42,500 in 2018, per the BLS.
A marble setter prepares the surface to which marble is applied; it's typically cleaned and made level. He or she cuts the marble to specifications, and then anchors it in place. Polishing the surface of the marble is the final step. Marble setters may apply a marble finish to walls, floors, countertops, patios, and more. They typically complete on-the-job training or an apprenticeship to prepare for this physically demanding job. The BLS predicts that tile and marble setters will see 10% job growth from 2016-2026; it also reports that tile marble setters earned median pay of $41,840 in 2018.