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Masonry Professions Video: Career Options and Training Requirements

Masonry Professions Video: Career Options and Training Requirements Transcript

Masonry professionals build structures from concrete, brick, stone and other types of materials. Skilled brickmasons, blockmasons and stonemasons have spent thousands of years building on residential and industrial construction sites. These professionals have always been in demand and will remain so as the need for new and improved structures continues to grow.

Introduction

There are many jobs that make up the masonry industry. The most common are Brickmasons, blockmasons and stonemasons which are all considered masonry professionals. Brickmasons and blockmasons construct buildings using cinder blocks or sprayed concrete. Stonemasons work with natural and artificial stone. There are also professionals who work in a highly specialized field known as refractory masonry.

Job Skills and Duties

The skills needed by masonry professionals depend greatly on their specialization. Generally speaking, masonry professionals need to know how to safely operate specific equipment, take measurements, read blueprints and lift heavy objects. Knowing how to refurbish different types of structures is also important, particularly for masonry professionals who specialize in restoration.

The exact duties of masonry professionals will always depend on their level of experience, specialty and place of employment. Commonalities nearly every mason is responsible for include the mixing and application of mortar, stones, bricks and blocks. Most masonry professionals also do their own finish work, pointing, cleaning and caulking after their structures have been built.

Training Required

Masonry professionals almost always receive their education on-the job. Industry-based programs are available at vocational schools, but apprenticeships are typically the preferred path. Apprenticeship programs are available through trade groups, unions and construction companies. The average apprenticeship lasts two to fours years and includes instruction in everything from mathematics and blueprint reading to mortar mixing and mechanical drawing.

Well Known Jobs within This Field of Expertise

Many masonry professionals are knowledgeable in one or more masonry fields. Nevertheless, the vast majority of masonry professionals eventually become brickmasons or blockmasons. Although there is a need for other types of masons, brickmasons tend to be more in demand. Brickmasons and blockmasons use bricks and blocks to build and repair walls, floors and other brick-based structures. Stonemasons are similar to bricklayers except they build and set structures out of stone. They typically work with natural stone, like marble and granite, as well as artificial stones made from concrete. Refractory masons are a highly specialized form of mason. They build and repair stone structures that need to withstand intense heat, such as furnaces and boilers.

Conclusion

Beginning Masonry professionals need to dedicate a lot of time to the craft before they can work on their own. But if you enjoy working with your hands and love the idea of creating structures out of raw materials, masonry could very well be the field for you.


Sources

Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupation Outlook Handbook - Plasterers and Stucco Masons

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos210.htm

Bureau of Labor Statistic Occupation Outlook Handbook - Brickmasons, Blockmasons and Stonemasons

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos201.htm

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