Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Southwest Piping Institute Apprentice Program a State Registered Program?

  • Yes.  This means that our program has a set of standards that has been approved and registered with the State of New Mexico and the State of Texas.  This means we follow all State and Department of Labor guidelines for operating and receiving funding.

What documents will I need for my application?

  • You will need proof of a high school diploma or completion of equivalency.
  • You will need proof of age (you can be less than 18 to apply BUT you cannot go out for work until you are 18 years of age or older.)
  • You will need letters of recommendation.  Personal letters of recommendation will work, however, letters of recommendation from past and/or current employers as well as current Local 412 members carry more weight during the interview process).

Is there a deadline to turn in my application once I pick it up?

  • There is no deadline, however, the sooner you turn it in, the more likely you are to get an earlier interview date.

Can I pick up an application before the window opens so I can be ready to turn it in?

  • No.

What happens after I interview?

  • Your file will be rated based on your scores and you will be put on what is known as a ranking list in the order of your overall score amongst all the other applicants.  If job calls cannot be filled with current local 412 apprentices, the Union Hall will notify the Training Center to begin calling people off the ranking list in order of their score.

Do I have to quit my current job once I am on the ranking list?

  • No.  In fact, we tell you to retain your current job until such a time we call you with a job offer and you accept it.  Based on your position on the ranking list, job offers can take as little as a few weeks to months based on the construction industry’s demand for manpower.

Will I be able to give my current employer 2 weeks’ notice?

  • Although we do find it very commendable that you want to give your current employer this courtesy, most of the job calls need to be filled immediately (usually the next day or up to three days).

What if I don’t answer the phone when I am called for a job?

  • We continue to call down the list until someone takes the call.  If you call back immediately, the job may still be available. It is crucial that we have your most current phone number.  If your number has changed, you need to call us immediately so it can be annotated.

Am I guaranteed a job that is local to where I live?

  • There are no guarantees what job location you will be offered.  Our jurisdiction covers the entire state of New Mexico and 9 counties in Texas which includes the city of El Paso.  During the interview, you will be asked if you will have a problem taking a job call outside of the area in which you reside.

What happens if I turn down calls for jobs?

  • The JATC Committee can remove you from the ranking list for turning down 2 or more calls.  You can reapply during the next application window opening.

Is there drug testing for the jobs?

  • Yes.  Drug testing is done for job calls and at random by our contractors.

If I fail a drug test but have a Medical Marijuana Card, will that keep me on the job?

  • No. Failing a drug test for your first job is an automatic expulsion from the program.  If you pass your initial drug test but fail any subsequent testing as an apprentice, you will be referred  to the Disciplinary Committee which can expel you from the program.

Do I need to have a drivers license?

  • Yes. You also must have a clean driving record so that you are insurable on the job.

How many years is the UA Local 412 Apprenticeship Program?

  • The program is 5 years long unless the committee grants you credit for previous experience.  To get credit, you must have all supporting documents of your experience presented to the Training Director when you are coming up for your 1-year probation review.  If the committee grants you credit, your date of completion will be adjusted.  You will work for a signatory contractor during the day and attend classes two nights a week.

Do I work for a contractor during the day and attend school at night?

  • Yes.  You will attend school two nights a week for 3.5 hours each night.

I am a Military Veteran or Active Guard / Reservist.  Can I apply?

  • Yes you can.  You may qualify for direct entry.  Call us at (505) 256-9257 to see if the window for Direct Entry is open.

I have a certificate of completion in either plumbing, welding, pipefitting or HVAC from a community college or trade producing school.  Does that help?

  • Yes.  You may qualify for direct entry.  Call us at (505) 256-9257 to see if the window for Direct Entry is open.