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Training as an apprentice

A Competenz apprenticeship is a structured programme of learning that combines practical skills and technical training. It takes three to four years to complete.

Anyone can do an apprenticeship

There’s no age restriction. If you’re already working and have built up skills, you can have those qualifications formally recognised.

How to get into an apprenticeship

To train as a Competenz apprentice, you need to be working in one of our industries. Read on for how to get started.

If you want to become an apprentice at a new job, here's what to do…

  • Through our trust, Apprentice Training New Zealand (ATNZ), we can help get you into employment. Find out more about ATNZ. 
  • Be proactive, approach local businesses about work experience or look for apprenticeship opportunities on Seek, Trademe, local newspapers and job-related websites.
  • Complete a pre-trade at your local polytechnic. A National Certificate in Mechanical Engineering (Level 2) is equivalent to the first year of a four year apprenticeship.

If your current boss is interested in you becoming an apprentice, here's what to do…

  • Contact Competenz
  • Get assigned to an Account Manager
  • Work with an Account Manager to sign up and plan your career
  • Start on-the-job training
  • Study to pass your unit standards
  • Become a qualified tradesperson!

There are several ways to get a head start for your apprenticeship and career.

Entry from school

Students leaving secondary school are best suited if they have studied some of the following subjects; maths, english, science, workshop and design technology, physics, graphics, chemistry, or Level 1 and Level 2 engineering unit standards.

Gateway work experience

Gateway programmes provide senior secondary students with the opportunity to experience workplace learning while still at school. Students are able to increase their practical skills and knowledge, and can use the Tools4Work resources in the classroom to continue learning and gaining mechanical engineering unit standards as part of their school study programme.

Gateway also works to foster ongoing relationships between schools, students, employers and training companies.

Entry through tertiary education

A pre-apprenticeship course delivered by a polytechnic or a training company is an excellent way to begin a career, and employers look favourably on any related course of study undertaken at a tertiary level. An achievement of 50 credits minimum is a good indication you will do well in an apprenticeship.

The Recognition of Prior Learning programme (RPL) is for mature students who have worked in their industry for a number of years but have never been given the opportunity to have their skills formally recognised.

Find out more about RPL