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Jobs for Which
You Can Qualify
If You’re a
High School Graduate
U.S. Department of Labor
Bureau of Labor Statistics
May 1980




liVERSm

_____

POSITORY No.

Jobs for Which
You Can Qualify
If You’re a
High School Graduate

Whether you’re looking for your first job or planning
to change careers, as a high school graduate you have a
wide variety of occupations from which to choose. Your
diploma qualifies you for jobs such as correction
officer, physical therapist aide, autom obile sales
w orker, and lo co m o tiv e e n g in e er. With som e
specialized training, you can become a computer
operator, chef, or real estate sales worker. Or you can
learn a trade either on the job or through an apprentice­
ship program and become a machinist, lithographer,
plumber, or other skilled worker.
This pamphlet contains a list of occupations—
selected from the 1980-81 O ccupational O u tlo o k
H a n d b o o k of the Bureau of Labor Statistics—that are
open to high school graduates. It highlights the
qualifications needed for each.
These summaries cannot provide all the information
you need, however. Details on the content of an ap­
prenticeship or other training program are omitted. So
too is information on special talents, aptitudes, or in­
terests a job may require. For more information about
an occupation, look in the Occupational O utlook
H a ndbook. It describes the nature o f the work, working
conditions, places of employment, job qualifications
and advancement prospects, employment outlook, and
earnings for hundreds of occupations. It also lists re­
lated occupations and other helpful sources of career in­
formation.
The H a n d b o o k is available in offices of school guid­
ance counselors and employment counselors and in
school and public libraries. Or it may be purchased for
$8 by check or money order from the nearest regional
office o f the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A list of offices
and their addresses appears at the back of this
pamphlet.
Reprints from the H andbook also are available,
each containing information about several related oc­
cupations. At the end of this pamphlet is a list of
reprints along with an order form that includes infor­
mation on prices.
This pamphlet is one in a series of five prepared by
the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Each pamphlet dis­
cusses a group o f occupations for which a particular




educational or training background is applicable. The
other titles in the series are: Jobs fo r Which You Can
Train Through Apprenticeship; Jobs fo r Which You
Can Qualify I f Y o u ’ N ot a High School Graduate;
re
Jobs fo r Which You Probably Will N eed Som e College
or Specialized Training; and Jobs fo r Which You
Probably Will N eed a College Education.

Industrial Production and
Related Occupations
Foundry Occupations
Patternmakers. A 5-year apprenticeship is considered
the best way to learn this trade. Vocational school
courses in patternmaking, metalworking, and machin­
ing may be credited toward completion of the appren­
ticeship. Because of the precise skills needed, appren­
ticeships for wood and metal patternmaking are separ­
ate. A high school diploma generally is required.
M olders. Completion of a 4-year apprenticeship is the
recommended way to learn skilled hand molding.
Workers who have this training also are preferred for
some kinds of machine molding. Less skilled hand
molding jobs can be learned on the job in 2 to 6 months.
An eighth grade education usually is the minimum re­
q u irem en t for ap p ren ticesh ip ; h ow ever, m any
employers prefer high school graduates.
Coremakers. Completion of a 4 -year apprenticeship is
the recommended way to learn skilled hand coremak­
ing. Workers with this training also are preferred for the
more difficult machine coremaking jobs. Although the
minimum requirement for apprenticeships is an eighth
grade education, most employers prefer high school
graduates. Inexperienced workers may learn less
skilled coremaking on the job.

Machining Occupations
A ll-ro u n d machinists. A 4-year apprenticeship is the
best way to learn the trade; however, some companies
have training programs that require less than 4 years
for machinists who specialize in one type of product or
1

and-die work. High school graduates are preferred for
apprenticeships.

Printing Occupations
C ompositors. All-round compositors usually train
through a 4-year apprenticeship program. The program
may be shortened for apprentices with previous ex ­
perience or schooling. Applicants for apprenticeships
generally must be high school graduates. An increasing
number of people learn their skills on the job by work­
ing as helpers for several years.
Lithographers. Although most lithographers learn their
trade on the job by helping experienced lithographers,
employers recommend a 4- or 5-year apprenticeship
program. These programs, which may emphasize a
specific craft such as camera operator or platemaker,
attempt to introduce all lithographic operations. Appli­
cants for apprenticeships usually must be high school
graduates.
Photoengravers. Most photoengravers learn their skills
through a 5-year apprenticeship program. Applicants
for apprenticeships usually must be high school or
vocational school graduates.

machine. Many machinists learn their skills on the job.
A high school diploma is strongly recommended.
Instrum ent makers (mechanical). Many instrument
makers learn their trade through 4-year apprentice­
ships. Others advance from machinists or skilled
machine tool operators after 1 or 2 years of shop ex­
perience. Employers generally prefer high school grad­
uates, especially for apprenticeship programs.
M achine tool operators. These workers are classified
as either semiskilled or skilled operators. Most are
trained on the job. Semiskilled operators may learn
their trade in just a few months, but skilled operators
often require 1 to 2 years. Some companies have formal
training programs for new employees.
Setup workers (machine tools). Setup workers usually
must be all-round machinists. To make metal parts ac­
cording to specifications, they must know how to oper­
ate more than one type of machine tool and be able to
plan the sequence of a machining operation.
Tool-and-die makers. The best way to learn this trade
is through a 4-year apprenticeship, but many workers
learn in vocational school programs or on the job.
Several years of experience often are required after
completing an apprenticeship for more difficult tool-




Electrotypers and stereotypers. Although a 4-year ap­
prenticeship is the usual preparation for these trades,
apprenticeships have not been available in the last
several years due to the declining dem and for
electrotypers and stereotypers. M any experienced
electrotypers and stereotypers are being retrained for
other jobs.
Printing press operators and assistants. Apprenticeship
is the recommended way to learn the trade. The
program in commercial printing shops lasts 2 years for
press assistants and 4 years for press operators. Appli­
cants for apprenticeships usually must be high school
graduates. Many workers learn their skills by working
as helpers or press assistants, or by combining work ex­
perience and training in vocational schools.
B ookbinders and bindery workers. A 4- or 5-year ap­
prenticeship is recommended for skilled bookbinders.
Applicants for apprenticeships usually must be high
school graduates. Because bindery workers may be less
skilled than bookbinders, most learn their trade by
working informally on the job from several months to 2
years. Some, however, complete formal apprentice­
ships.

Other Industrial Production
and Related Occupations
Assem blers. Training varies according to the level of
skill required. Most inexperienced persons can be
trained on the job in a few days or weeks, but, for some

types of complicated assembly work, training lasts
much longer.
A u to m o b ile painters. Most of these workers acquire
their skills by working for 3 to 4 years with experienced
painters. A small number learn through a 3-year ap­
prenticeship.
Blacksm iths. Many blacksmiths are trained by working
as helpers in blacksmith shops or industrial firms that
employ blacksmiths. Some enter through 3- or 4-year
apprenticeship programs. Blacksmiths who shoe horses
are called farriers. Most farriers learn their craft by
assisting experienced workers. Others take a 3- or 4week course in horseshoeing before gaining experience
on their own or as a farrier’s assistant. These courses
are taught in several colleges, as well as at private
horseshoeing schools. At least 3 to 5 years of special
training or experience are needed to learn to shoe
racehorses. Farriers who wish to work at racetracks
must pass a licensing examination.
)
B lue-collar worker supervisors. Most workers who are
promoted to blue-collar supervisor jobs are high school
graduates who have risen through the ranks and
learned their skills on the job. Supervisors sometimes
are former union representatives who are familiar with
grievance procedures and union contracts. To supple­
ment work experience, most employers have training
programs to help develop supervisory skills. Although
few supervisors are college graduates, a growing num­
ber of employers are hiring supervisor trainees who
have college backgrounds. This practice is most
prevalent in industries with highly technical production
processes, such as the chemical, oil, and electronics in­
dustries.
Boilerm aking occupations. This group includes layout
workers, fitters, and boilermakers. Most layout workers
and fitters are hired as helpers and learn the craft by
working with experienced employees for at least 2
years. Many boilermakers also learn their trade on the
job, although most training authorities recommend a 4year apprenticeship. For all three occupations,
employers prefer high school or vocational school grad­
uates.
B oiler tenders. Most learn their skills by working as
helpers in boiler rooms. Some large cities and a few
States require boiler tenders to be licensed. Applicants
for a license must pass a written test.
Electroplaters. Most learn their trade on the job as
helpers to experienced workers, but some learn through
3- or 4-year apprenticeship programs. Applicants for
apprenticeships usually must be high school graduates.




A few ta*ke 1- or 2-year courses in electroplating at
junior colleges, technical institutes, and vocational
schools.
Forge shop occupations. Most workers learn these
trades on the job. Generally, they start as helpers or
heaters on hammer or press crews. Workers advance to
more skilled occupations as they gain experience and
as openings occur. Some forge shops offer 4-year ap­
prenticeship programs for skilled jobs, such as die
sinker and heat treater. High school graduation may be
preferred for more skilled occupations.
Inspectors (manufacturing). Inspectors generally learn
their skills on the job. Depending on the skill required,
training may last from a few hours to several months.
Some employers hire applicants who do not have a high
school diploma but who have related experience.
M illwrights. Generally, these workers start as helpers
and rotate from job to job for 6 to 8 years to acquire the
necessary skills. Millwrights also are trained through 4year apprenticeship programs.
M otion picture projectionists. Most motion picture
theaters in urban areas are unionized and projectionists
in these theaters must meet union membership require­
ments. Some union locals accept only persons who have
experience running theater projectors. Other locals
conduct training programs for inexperienced persons.
In these programs, trainees work with a variety of pro­
jection equipm ent under the supervision of e x ­
perienced projectionists and may take courses in basic
electronics and mechanics. In a nonunion theater, a
trainee may start as an usher or helper and learn the
trade by working with an experienced projectionist. A
high school diploma is preferred by employers and may
be required by union locals. Experience acquired while
serving in the Armed Forces is helpful. Local govern­
ments may require projectionists to be licensed.
O phthalm ic laboratory technicians. Most learn their
skills on the job, but ^some learn through 3- or 4-year
apprenticeship programs. Some technicians receive
training while in the Armed Forces. Others attend com­
munity colleges or vocational or technical schools
where they receive certificates, diplomas, or associate
degrees in programs varying from 9 months to 3 years.
Employers prefer high school graduates; applicants for
apprenticeships usually must be graduates. Some states
require technicians to be licensed. Applicants for a
license must pass an examination.
Photographic laboratory occupations. Most photo­
graphic laboratory workers learn their skills through
on-the-job training. Employers generally prefer high

Office Occupations

school graduates. Applicants who specialize *in a par­
ticular laboratory procedure are in training from a few
weeks to several months. All-round technicians learn
their trade in about 3 years.

Clerical Occupations
Bookkeeping workers. High school graduates who
have taken business arithmetic, bookkeeping, and basic
accounting meet the minimum requirements for most
bookkeeping jobs. Some employers prefer applicants
who have completed business courses at a junior col­
lege or business school and have had some work ex­
perience. General knowledge of how computers are
used for bookkeeping transactions is very helpful, as is
the ability to type and use various office machines. In a
few States, a license is required to work on tax returns.

Power truck operators. Newly hired operators usually
are trained on the job. Most workers can learn how to
operate a power truck in just a few days, but it may take
several weeks to learn the physical layout and opera­
tion of a plant and the most efficient way o f handling
the materials to be moved. Some power truck manufac­
turers conduct short training courses for operators
employed by their customers.
Production painters. New workers usually learn their
skills on the job by helping experienced painters.
Training may vary from a few days to several months.

Cashiers. Many cashiers are trained on the job. In large
firms, training often includes classroom instruction in
the use o f electronic or computerized cash registers and
other phases of the job. Cashier training also is availa­
ble in many public school vocational programs.

Stationary engineers. Many start as helpers or oilers
and acquire their skills informally during many years
on the job. Technical or other training in vocational
schools or home study can supplement this experience.
A good background also can be obtained in the Navy or
Merchant Marine. Most training authorities, however,
recommend completion of a 4-year apprenticeship.
Employers prefer to hire high school graduates. Many
States and larger cities require stationary engineers to
be licensed. Generally a stationary engineer may
qualify for one of several classes of licenses—each
specifying the steam pressure or horsepower of the
equipment the engineer may operate. A high school
diploma may be required for higher class licenses.

Collection workers. Newly hired workers are trained
on the job. A high school diploma generally is required.
Training also is available through the educational
branch o f the American Collectors’ Association.
File clerks. Newly hired workers usually receive
several weeks or months of on-the-job training. A high
school diploma generally is required. Most employers
seek applicants who can type and have som e
knowledge of office practices which can be learned in
high schools, vocational schools, private business
schools, and community and junior colleges. In addi­
tion, many States and localities sponsor programs that
provide training in basic clerical skills.

Wastewater treatm ent plant operators (sewage plant
operators). Trainees usually start as helpers and learn
their skills on the job. Some States require applicants to
have at least a high school diploma or its equivalent.
Some larger cities and towns which are covered by civil
service regulations require applicants to pass exam ina­
tions on elementary mathematics, mechanical aptitude,
and general intelligence. In 42 States, operators who
are supervisors or responsible for a plant’s operation
must pass an examination certifying that they are capa­
ble of overseeing treatment operations.

H otel fron t office clerks. High school graduation is the
usual requirement for front office jobs. Newly hired
workers generally are trained on the job as mail, infor­
mation, or key clerks. Some clerks may need additional
training in data processing and office machine opera­
tion. Most hotels fill front office jobs by promotion from
within, so that a key or mail clerk may be promoted to
room clerk, then to assistant front office manager, and
eventually to front office manager.

Welders. Training varies for the several levels of skill
within this occupation. Less skilled jobs can be learned
on the job in a few months, but a skilled welder
generally needs several years of training and ex ­
perience. Many large companies train their own
welders. Many employers prefer to hire applicants who
have high school or vocational training in welding for
entry to skilled jobs. A few companies have apprentice­
ship programs. An employer or government agency
may require welders to pass a qualifying examination
for work where the strength of the weld is highly criti­
cal.




Office machine operators. These workers generally are
trained on the job. Training can range from a few days
for duplicating machine operators to several weeks of
training at a manufacturer’s school for bookkeeping
and billing machine operators. Employers prefer to hire
high school or business school graduates.
Postal clerks. Applicants must be at least 18 except
for high school graduates, who must be at least 16. Ap­
plicants must pass an examination for clerical accuracy
and the ability to read, do simple arithmetic, and
4

memorize mail sorting systems. Applicants also must
pass a physical examination and may have to show that
they can handle mail sacks weighing up to 70 pounds.
These workers are trained primarily on the job.

S ta tistica l clerks. A high school diplom a or its
equivalent is required for most jobs. Newly hired
workers are trained on the job. In some instances, in­
dividuals are hired as general office clerks before being
promoted to statistical clerk.

R eceptionists. This occupation is a good choice for
many persons without prior work experience. Recep­
tionists are trained on the job. A high school diploma
generally is required.

Stock clerks. There are no specific educational re­
quirements for beginning stock clerks, although
employers prefer to hire high school graduates. Newly
hired workers learn their skills on the job. Basic duties
usually are learned in a few weeks. Stock clerks who
handle jewelry, liquor, or drugs must be bonded (which
requires good character references).

Secretaries and stenographers. High school graduation
is the minimum requirem ent for practically all
sec reta ria l and sten ograp h ic p o sitio n s. M any
employers prefer to hire applicants who have had addi­
tional training at a public or private vocational school
or in college. These courses range in length from
several months’ instruction for shorthand and typing to
1 or 2 years for specialized skills, such as legal or m edi­
cal secretarial work. Employers generally test appli­
cants to see that they meet minimum standards of typ­
ing and stenographic speed. Persons seeking a job as a
shorthand reporter should transcribe 225 words per
minute.

Typists. Employers generally prefer to hire high school
graduates who can type at least 50-60 words per
minute. Most typists learn their skills in high schools or
take courses lasting several months at public or private
vocational schools or at community or junior colleges.

Computer and Related Occupations
Computer operating personnel. High school gradua­
tion is the minimum requirement for computer operat­
ing jobs such as keypunch operator, auxiliary equip­
ment operator, and console operator. Many employers
prefer console operators to have some community or
junior college education. Beginners usually are trained
on the job. Auxiliary equipment operators can learn
their jobs in a few weeks, but console operators require
several months of training before they are sufficiently
familiar with the equipment to be able to trace the
causes of breakdowns.

Shipping and receiving clerks. High school graduates
are preferred for beginning jobs. Newly hired workers
are trained on the job.




Banking Occupations
Bank clerks. These workers are trained on the job and
generally learn their skills in just a few days or weeks.
A high school diploma definitely is preferred.
Bank tellers. These workers learn their skills on the job.
Training may last from a few days to 3 weeks or longer.
Generally, banks prefer to hire high school graduates
who have some experience in office work.

Insurance Occupations
Claim representatives. A growing number of insurance
companies prefer to hire college graduates for positions
as claim representatives (examiners and adjusters).
College training is not always necessary, however. Per­
sons experienced in automobile repair work might be
hired as auto adjusters, and those who have had cleri­
cal experience might get jobs as inside adjusters. About
three-fourths of the States require adjusters to be
licensed. State licensing requirements vary, but appli­
cants usually must complete an approved course in in­
surance or loss adjusting, and pass a written examina­
tion. They should be bonded which requires good
5

character references and should be at least* 20 years
old.

Service Occupations
Cleaning and Related Occupations
Building custodians. Most building custodians are
trained on the job. Training in custodial skills is availa­
ble through government training programs and labor
unions.
H otel housekeepers and assistants. Employers prefer to
hire high school graduates. Experience or training in
hotel housekeeping also is helpful in getting a job.
Several colleges, junior colleges, and technical in­
stitutes have programs in hotel administration that in­
clude courses in housekeeping. The Educational In­
stitute of the American Hotel and Motel Association
offers courses for either classroom or home study.
Pest controllers. Most begin as helpers to experienced
pest controllers and can do routine pest control work
after 2 or 3 months of on-the-job training. Employers
generally prefer to hire high school graduates who are
licensed to drive.

Food Service Occupations
Bartenders. Most bartenders learn their trade on the
job. Experience as a bartender’s helper, dining room
attendant, waiter, or waitress is good training. Some
schools offer short courses in bartending. Generally,
bartenders must be at least 21 years old; some
employers prefer persons who are 25 or older. Some
States require bartenders to have health certificates
showing they are free from contagious diseases. In
some instances, bartenders must be bonded.

tificates showing that they are free of contagious dis­
eases.
Food counter workers. Most counter workers learn
their skills on the job. M anagers o f fast-food
restaurants often hire high school students as part-time
counter workers. State laws often require counter
workers to obtain health certificates showing that they
are free of contagious diseases.

Cooks and chefs. Most cooks acquire their skills on the
job as kitchen helpers, although cooks increasingly
have high school or post-high school vocational training
in food preparation. Cooks and chefs may also be
trained as apprentices under trade union contracts, by
professional associations, or as part of employee train­
ing program s co n d u c ted by large h o tels and
restaurants. Employers usually prefer high school grad­
uates, and applicants for apprenticeships generally
must be graduates. The Armed Forces also are a good
source of training and experience in food service. Most
States require cooks and chefs to have health certifi­
cates showing that they are free o f contagious diseases.

M eatcutters. Although many learn their skills infor­
mally on the job, most meatcutters complete a 2-year
apprenticeship program. A few attend private schools
that specialize in meatcutting. At the end of the train­
ing, apprentices are given a meatcutting test that their
employers observe. Employers prefer high school grad­
uates. Some States require meatcutters to have health
certificates showing that they are free of contagious dis­
eases.
Waiters and waitresses. Although most waiters and
waitresses start as dining room attendants, carhops, or
food counter workers, or learn their skills on the job,
some attend training courses offered by public and pri­
vate vocational schools, restaurant associations, or
large restaurant chains. Expensive restaurants that take
pride in the quality o f their service often hire only e x ­

Dining room attendants and dishwashers. These o c­
cupations can be learned on the job with very little for­
mal training. Many employers will hire applicants who
do not speak English. State laws often require dining
room attendants and dishwashers to obtain health cer­




6

perienced waiters and waitresses. Knowledge of a
foreign language is helpful in restaurants specializing
in food of a foreign country. State laws often require
waiters and waitresses to obtain health certificates
showing that they are free of contagious diseases.

Firefighters. In most communities, qualifying examina­
tions are open to high school graduates who are at least
18. Those who score the highest on these examinations
have the best chances for appointment. Experience as a
volunteer firefighter or in the Armed Forces may help
chances for appointment, too. Beginners in large fire
departments generally are trained for several weeks at
the city’s fire school before assignment to local fire
companies. Small communities either train firefighters
on the job or hire experienced workers. A small num­
ber of fire departments have 3- to 4-year apprentice­
ship programs.

Personal Service Occupations
Barbers. All States require barbers to be licensed. To
obtain a license, applicants must graduate from a Stateapproved barber school and be at least 16 years old (in
some States 18). Educational requirements in States
vary— some require graduation from high school, while
others have no requirement at all. Many States require
an examination for an apprentice license and a second
examination, after 1 or 2 years of work, for a license as a
registered barber. Many public and private schools and
a few vocational schools offer a 9- to 12-month train­
ing course. Because some States do not recognize outof-State training, apprenticeship work, or licenses, per­
sons who wish to become barbers should review the
laws of the State in which they wish to work before en­
tering barber school.

Guards. Employers prefer high school graduates; ap­
plicants who have not completed high school may be
tested for their ability to read, write, and follow written
and oral instructions. Police experience gained in the
Armed Forces or in State or local police departments is
helpful. Most newly hired guards receive on-the-job
training combined with formal instruction.
Police officers. Most large cities and many smaller
communities fill police jobs by competitive examina­
tion. Candidates usually must be at least 21 years old,
high school graduates, in good health, and meet height,
weight, hearing, and vision requirem ents. Police
departments in some large cities generally require 1 or
more years of college, and a growing number of police
departments hire students in college-level law enforce­
ment programs as police interns. Police departments in
some small cities consider applicants who have not
finished high school but who have experience in law
enforcement. Small communities often train police
officers on the job; large cities have formal training
ranging from a few weeks to several months at a police
academy.

Bellhops and bell captains. Bellhops are trained on the
job. Although not required, a high school diploma im­
proves chances for promotion to bell captain or to front
office clerk. Opportunities for advancement to bell cap­
tain are limited, however.
Cosmetologists. All States require cosmetologists to be
licensed. Most States require applicants for a license to
be at least 16 years old and pass a physical examina­
tion. Educational requirements for licensure vary
among States—some have no requirement, while others
require graduation from high school. Successful com­
pletion of a State-approved cosmetology course is ap­
propriate preparation to take an examination. In some
States, completion of a 1- or 2-year apprenticeship
program can substitute for graduation from cos­
metology school, but few cosmetologists learn their
skills this way. Both public and private vocational
schools offer training in cosmetology. A daytime course
usually takes 6 months to 1 year; an evening course
takes longer.

State police officers. State civil service regulations
govern the appointment of State police officers; a com­
petitive examination generally is required. In most
States, the examination is open to high school gradu­
ates, or to persons who have an equivalent combination
of education and experience. State police officers must
be at least 21, in good health, and must meet height,
weight, hearing, and vision standards. Tests of strength
and agility often are required. The character and back­
ground of candidates usually are investigated. In some
States, high school graduates who are under 21 may
enter State police work as cadets. They attend classes,
are assigned nonenforcement duties, and, if they
qualify, may be appointed officers at age 21. States re­
quire that recruits enter a formal training program of
several months for classroom instruction.

Protective and Related Service Occupations
Correction officers. Most State and local governments
prefer individuals who are high school graduates and
are at least 21 years old. Many require applicants to
pass a physical examination and meet standards of
height, weight, vision, and hearing. Some State and
local governments require applicants to qualify through
a written examination that tests general intelligence.
Although some correction officers attend training
academies, most are trained on the job.




Construction inspectors (government). These workers
receive most o f their training on the job. Generally, ap­
7

Education and Related Occupations

plicants must have several years of experience as a con­
struction contractor, supervisor, or craft worker. Pre­
vious experience as an electrician, plumber, pipefitter,
or carpenter is particularly helpful. A high school
diploma is required by Federal, State and most local
governments. Many employers prefer inspectors who
have graduated from an apprenticeship program or
have had college courses in architecture, engineering,
mathematics, or construction technology.

Teaching Occupations
Teacher aides. Requirem ents vary w idely. Some
schools hire high school graduates; some do not require
a diploma. Others want aides to have some college
training or a bachelor’s degree. Teacher aides may be
trained on the job or through a formal training
program. Schools may prefer individuals who have ex ­
perience working with children. Some schools have
regulations regarding the hiring of aides. For example,
applicants may be required to have a family income
below a certain level or to be parents of children in the
school district. In addition, health regulations may re­
quire teacher aides to pass a physical examination.

Other Service Occupations
M ail carriers. Applicants must be at least 18 except for
high school graduates, who must be at least 16. They
also must pass an examination that tests clerical ac­
curacy and the ability to read, do simple arithmetic,
and memorize mail sorting systems. If the job involves
driving, an applicant must have a driver’s license and
pass a road test. Applicants also must pass a physical
examination and may be asked to show that they can
handle mail sacks weighing up to 70 pounds. These
workers are trained primarily on the job.

Library Occupations
Library technicians and assistants. These workers may
receive training either on the job or in a formal postsec­
ondary training program. Some libraries require only
graduation from high school for library clerks, who,
after a few years of training on the job, may advance to
technician positions. Other libraries hire only techni­
cians who have formal training.

Telephone operators. After 1 to 3 weeks of on-the-job
training, operators are assigned to regular jobs and
receive further instruction from supervisors. PBX
operators may have a somewhat shorter training period
than telephone company operators. High school grad­
uation is generally required.




Sales Occupations
A utom obile parts counter workers. These workers
learn on the job. Generally 2 years of work experience
are needed before a person becomes thoroughly
familiar with most types of parts and accessories.
Employers usually prefer to hire high school graduates.
A utom obile sales workers. Most beginners are trained
on the job, although large dealers sometimes provide
formal classroom training. Many employers require
beginning sales workers to be at least 21 years old and
high school graduates.
A u to m o b ile service advisors. These workers are
trained on the job. Trainees usually are selected from
among personnel already employed in the organiza­
tion—for example, an experienced mechanic or parts
counter worker. Generally, 1 or 2 years of training are
needed before a new service advisor can handle all
aspects of the job. Some advisors attend training
programs conducted by automobile manufacturers. A
high school diploma is preferred.
Gasoline service station attendants. These workers are
trained on the job. A high school diploma usually is not
required and students often are hired for these jobs.
Applicants for attendant jobs should have a driver’s
license.
8

«
employers prefer to hire college graduates for these
jobs. Useful experience may be gained by working as a
reservation clerk or receptionist in a travel agency or as
an airline reservation or passenger agent.

M odels. The most important asset for a model is a dis­
tinctive and attractive physical appearance. Size re­
quirements for certain assignments are rigid. There are
no educational requirements for models; some have
limited formal education, others have completed high
school and modeling school, and others have had col­
lege training. Many sales jobs in department stores pro­
vide useful experience in selecting and coordinating
fashions, experimenting with makeup and occasionally,
modeling. Developing a portfolio is very important.
The overwhelming majority of models work through
modeling agencies.

Wholesale trade sales workers. Employers generally
require applicants to be high school graduates,
although college training is increasingly important. The
background a sales worker needs depends mainly upon
the product line and the market. Selling certain prod­
ucts, such as pharmaceuticals, may require a back­
ground in chemistry, biology, or pharmacy, for exam ­
ple. High school graduates may begin in a nonselling
job and work their way up or may be hired as a sales
trainee. Usually it takes 2 years or longer to prepare
trainees for sales positions. College graduates enter the
sales force directly out of school.

Real estate agents and brokers. All States require real
estate agents and brokers to be licensed. To obtain a
license as an agent, an individual must be a high school
graduate, be at least 18 years old, and pass a written
test. Many large firms prefer to hire college graduates.
However, most employers consider personality traits as
important as academic training and seek applicants
who have maturity, tact, and sales ability. Most States
require candidates for the general sales license to have
completed 30 hours of classroom instruction in the fun­
damentals and legal aspects of real estate transactions.
High schools, vocational schools, and colleges and
universities offer courses to prepare candidates for the
real estate sales examination. Many real estate firms
also offer these preparatory courses. Basic training re­
quirements for brokers are similar to those for agents.
However, in addition to the requirements listed, most
States require that candidates for the real estate
broker’s license complete 90 hours of classroom in­
struction in real estate and have 1-3 years of experience
selling real estate.

Construction Occupations
Bricklayers, stonemasons, and marblesetters. Most
bricklayers learn their trade on the job, usually in 3 to 5
years. But some bricklayers and most stonemasons and
marblesetters learn their skills through a 3-year ap­
prenticeship program. Employers usually prefer appli­
cants who have a high school diploma or its equivalent
for apprenticeship programs.
Carpenters. The recommended way to learn this trade
is to complete a 4-year apprenticeship. Most workers
learn on the job, however, often by beginning as a
helper to experienced carpenters and gradually acquir­
ing skills. It takes much longer to become a skilled car­
penter in this way than it does through an apprentice­
ship. Some knowledge of the trade also may be ob­
tained through vocational school courses. Employers
generally prefer to hire high school graduates.

R etail trade sales workers. Most sales workers learn
their skills on the job. In large stores, training programs
usually begin with several days of classroom instruc­
tion, which are followed by on-the-job training. In
small stores, an experienced worker or, in some cases,
the proprietor trains new sales workers. Employers
prefer to hire high school graduates. Thousands of high
schools offer distributive education programs that
allow students to work part time at local stores while
taking courses in merchandising, accounting, and other
aspects of retailing. Some of these programs are in­
tended for adults as well.

Cement masons and terrazzo workers. Most learn their
trade informally on the job in 2 to 3 years. Others com­
plete a 2- or 3-year apprenticeship. Employers prefer to
hire high school graduates.
Construction laborers. Most laborers are trained on
the job as this work does not require specific skills.
Generally, applicants must be at least 18 years old and
in good physical condition.

R oute drivers. Although some large companies have
classes in sales techniques, most route drivers are
trained on the job. Employers generally prefer high
school graduates. Most States require route drivers to
have a chauffeur’s license.

D ryw all installers and finishers. These workers usually
start as helpers and learn their skills on the job in 2 to 3
years. Some employers, in cooperation with unions,
supplement on-the-job training with classroom instruc­
tion in subjects such as tool use and care. High school
graduates are preferred.

Travel agents. Although no specific educational back­
ground is required to become a travel agent, some




9

school graduates. A pplicants for apprenticeships
generally must have a high school diploma.
Glaziers (construction). Most glaziers learn their trade
through 3-year apprenticeships. Others learn on the job
and a few pick up the skills while working in another
industry where glass is installed. Employers generally
prefer to hire high school graduates.
Insulation workers. Most insulation workers learn their
trade on the job. Others learn through a 4-year “im­
prover ship”program that is similar to an apprenticeship.
A few insulation workers pick up their skills while
working in another trade or in a manufacturing plant
where applying insulation is part of their job.
Employers prefer high school graduates who are
licensed to drive.
Ironw orkers (structural, ornam ental, and reinforcing
ironworkers; riggers; and m achine movers). Most learn
their skills on the job; however, completion of a 3-year
apprenticeship program is recommended. Employers
generally prefer high school graduates.
Lathers. Although many lathers acquire their skills in­
formally on the job, completion of an apprenticeship is
recommended. Depending on the local union operating
the program, apprenticeships last 2, 3, or 4 years.
Employers generally prefer high school graduates, and
a diploma is required for an apprenticeship.

Electricians (construction). Completion of a 4-year ap­
prenticeship is the recommended way to learn the
trade. Many electricians learn their skills on the job,
however. Employers prefer high school or vocational
school graduates who have 1 year of algebra. Appli­
cants for apprenticeships must be high school gradu­
ates. Many cities require electricians to be licensed; ap­
plicants must pass a written test and may have to
demonstrate their skill.

Operating engineers (construction m achinery opera­
tors). Completion of a 3-year apprenticeship program
including related classroom instruction is recom­
mended. Some engineers who learn their skills on the
job start as helpers or oilers and then progress from
operating light equipment to highly complex construc­
tion machinery. A few individuals learn their skills
while serving in the Armed Forces or through special
heavy-equipment training{schools. Most employers
prefer high school graduates; a diploma may be re­
quired for entry into apprenticeship programs.

Elevator constructors. Almost all elevator constructors
learn their trade on the job by working with ex­
perienced workers and through classroom instruction.
A newly hired worker usually can become a fully
qualified constructor within 4 years. A high school
diploma is required. Some localities require elevator
constructors to be licensed. To obtain a license, appli­
cants may have to pass a written test and sometimes
may have to demonstrate their skills.

Painters and paperhangers. Although completion o f a
3-year apprenticeship is recommended, apprenticeship
opportunities are very limited. Informal on-the-job
training is available through local contractors,
however. Employers prefer to hire applicants who have
a high school education.

Floor covering installers. Most of these workers learn
their skills on the job, usually beginning as helpers to
experienced workers. Others qualify through 2- to 4year apprenticeship programs. Individuals also may
learn the basic skills as part of an apprenticeship in car­
pentry, tilesetting, bricklaying, or stone and marblesetting. Employers prefer to hire high school or vocational




Plasterers. A 3- to 4-year apprenticeship is the recom­
mended way to learn the trade. Many plasterers learn
the trade on the job, however, by working as plasterers’
helpers or laborers. Employers generally prefer to hire
high school graduates.
10

Plumbers and pipefitters. Although many learn their
trade informally on the job, completion of a 4- to 5-year
apprenticeship is recommended. Employers prefer high
school graduates. Some localities require workers to be
licensed; applicants must pass a written examination.

pilot’s license from the Federal Aviation Administra­
tion (FAA). To obtain a license, applicants must be at
least 18, have at least 250 hours of flight experience,
and pass a strict physical examination. Applicants also
must pass a written test and demonstrate their flying
ability to FAA examiners. For bad weather, pilots also
must be licensed to fly by instruments which requires
40 hours of experience using instruments, passing a
written test, and demonstrating their ability to FAA ex ­
aminers. New pilots, usually hired as flight engineers,
already have fulfilled the added requirements. Airline
captains must have a transport pilot’s license requiring
even more flight experience. Flying can be learned in
military or civilian flying schools, but the airlines and
many businesses prefer pilots trained in the Armed
Forces. Airline pilots must be high school graduates,
however, most airlines require 2 years of college and
prefer college graduates.

Roofers. The majority o f roofers begin as helpers and
learn their skills on the job. Completion of a 3-year ap­
prenticeship is recommended, however. Employers
prefer high school graduates.
Sheet-metal workers. Although many learn the trade
informally on the job, completion o f a 4-year appren­
ticeship program is recommended. A high school
diploma is preferred by employers and is required for
entry to apprenticeship programs.
Tilesetters. The best way to learn this trade is through a
3-year apprenticeship program. H ow ever, many
workers acquire their skills on the job as helpers. When
hiring apprentices or helpers, employers usually prefer
high school or vocational school graduates.

Flight attendants. Most large airlines train their own
flight attendants; those that do not operate schools
usually send their trainees to another airline’s school.
Training programs generally last about 5 weeks. Appli­
cants must be high school graduates. Individuals who
have 2 years or more of college or experience dealing
with the public are preferred.

Occupations in Transportation Activities
Air Transportation Occupations
A ir traffic controllers. Trainees are selected through
the competitive Federal Civil Service System. Appli­
cants must be not more than 30 years old, pass a written
test, and have either a college degree or 3 years of work
experience that demonstrates their potential. Newly
hired controllers receive 16 weeks of formal training as
well as on-the-job training.

Reservation and passenger agents. Most agents receive
several weeks of classroom instruction and on-the-job
training. A high school diploma generally is required,
and some college training is preferred. Experience
dealing with the public is desirable.

Merchant Marine Occupations
Merchant marine officers. Candidates must either ac­
quire at least 3 years o f appropriate sea experience or
graduate from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy,
from one of six State merchant marine academies, or
from a trade union training program. Candidates also
must pass a Coast Guard examination to obtain a
license. Usually, applicants who have sea experience
but are not graduates o f academies must obtain train­
ing to pass the examination.

A irplane mechanics. Most mechanics learn their job
through 2-year programs offered by trade schools cer­
tified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
A few learn on the job. The majority of mechanics who
work on civilian aircraft are licensed by the FAA as
“airframe mechanics,” “powerplant mechanics,” or
“aircraft inspectors.” Airframe mechanics work on the
structural parts of the plane; powerplant mechanics
work on the engine. Some mechanics and all aircraft
inspectors must have both licenses. At least 18 months
of work experience are required for an airframe or
powerplant license; at least 30 months of experience
working with both engines and airframes are required
for a combined license. To obtain an inspector’s
license, a mechanic must have held an airframe-andpowerplant license for at least 3 years. Applicants for
all licenses must pass written and oral tests and demon­
strate their ability to do the work. Employers prefer
high school graduates.

Merchant marine sailors. Most sailors learn on the job,
although previous sea experience in the Coast Guard
or Navy is helpful. Applicants must obtain a doctor’s
certificate stating that they are in excellent health, and,
if they do not have previous sea experience, a letter
from an employer stating that they will be hired if a job
becomes available. In addition, they must acquire
special identification papers, “merchant mariner’s
documents,” from the Coast Guard. Several training
programs help experienced sailors upgrade their skills,
but only the school operated by the Seafarer’s Interna­
tional Union of North America trains inexperienced
sailors.

A irplane pilots. Pilots who are paid to transport
passengers or cargo must have at least a commercial




11

Railroad Occupations

least 21, pass a physical exam ination, and pass a writ­
ten test on m otor vehicle regulations. Most States re ­
quire a chauffeur’s license. Bus com panies generally
have even higher requirem ents. Most prefer applicants
who are at least 25 years old; some prefer those who
have truck or bus driving experience. A high school
diplom a is preferred.

Brake operators. On some railroads, operators receive
a few days of training, but most learn their skills on the
job. It usually takes a year to learn the job thoroughly.
Employers prefer applicants who have a high school
diplom a. A pplicants m ust have good eyesight and
hearing.
Conductors. C onductors are prom oted from the ranks
of qualified brake operators by seniority. To qualify, a
brake operator m ust pass a comprehensive exam ina­
tion.

L ocal transit busdrivers. New drivers receive several
weeks of classroom and driving instruction. Applicants
m ust be at least 21, have a chauffeur’s license, and
have good eyesight—with or without glasses. Most
em ployers require applicants to pass a physical ex­
am ination and a written test. A high school diplom a is
preferred by many employers.

L o co m o tive engineers. Openings in engineer jobs
usually are filled by training and promoting engineer
helpers according to their seniority. Applicants for
helper jobs must be at least 21 years old and have good
eyesight, hearing, and color vision. High school g rad u ­
ates are preferred. H elpers are placed in engineer
training program s within a year after they are hired.
They qualify for prom otion to engineer by proving their
ability to operate locomotives and by passing a com ­
prehensive exam ination.

L ocal truckdrivers. New drivers usually are trained on
the job. M any drivers begin by working as freight h an ­
dlers on a loading dock. In most States, applicants must
have a chauffeur’s license. The am ount o f driving ex­
perience required often depends on the size of truck to
be driven and value of the cargo.
L ong-distance truckdrivers. M inim um qualifications
set by the U.S. D epartm ent of Transportation require
drivers to be at least 21, pass a physical exam ination,
and pass a written test on m otor carrier safety reg u la­
tions. Most States require drivers to have a chauffeur’s
license. Em ployers m ay have even higher standards.
M any specify height and weight requirem ents for driv­
ers and some hire only applicants who have several
years’ experience driving trucks. Most truckdrivers
start as freight handlers on a loading dock, advance to
local truckdriver, and then to long-distance driver.

Shop trades. Com pleting a 3- to 4-year apprenticeship
program is the most com m on way to enter shop trades,
although some helpers and laborers are upgraded to
these jobs. A high school diplom a is preferred.
Signal departm ent workers. These workers begin as
helpers and are trained on the job. After 60 to 90 days
of training, they may advance to assistants; after 2
years’ additional training and experience, they may be
prom oted to signal installers or m aintainers. R ailroads
prefer high school or vocational school graduates.

Parking attendants. These w orkers are trained on the
job from a few hours to a week. A pplicants m ust have a
driver’s license and be able to drive all types of cars.
Com pletion of a driver’s education course is an asset.
G enerally, em ployers prefer high school graduates.

Station agents. These w orkers rise from the ranks of
other railroad occupations. Experienced telegraphers,
telephoners, tower operators, and clerks may become
agents in sm all stations and may be promoted to larger
stations as they gain seniority.

Taxicab drivers. In most cities, taxi drivers m ust have a
chauffeur’s license and pass a written test on taxicab
and traffic regulations to obtain a special license from
the local police or safety departm ent, or Public Utilities
Commission. Some com panies teach drivers taxicab
regulations and the location of streets. A large num ber
of com panies hire only applicants who are at least 21
and some require drivers to be 25 or older.

Telegraphers, telephoners, and tower operators. C leri­
cal w o rk ers u su ally fill these jobs according to
seniority. Upon prom otion, workers receive on-the-job
training. Before the prom otion is final, workers m ust
pass exam inations and show that they can use all the
equipm ent. A high school diplom a generally is p re ­
ferred and m ay be req u ired by some railroads.

Scientific and Technical Occupations

Driving Occupations
Intercity busdrivers. M ost com panies conduct 2- to 8week training program s for new employees. M inimum
qualifications established by the U.S. D epartm ent of
Transportation require intercity busdrivers to be at



Conservation Occupations
Forestry technicians. Most persons qualify for begin­
ning jobs by com pleting a specialized 1- or 2-year
12

4

postsecondary program , or by working on firefighting
crews, in tree nurseries, or in other forest work.

Other Scientific and Technical Occupations
Broadcast technicians. Persons who have earned the
first-class radiotelephone operator license from the
F ederal Com munications Commission have the best
chances of getting a job in this very competitive field.
To obtain the first-class license, applicants must pass a
series of written tests covering subjects such as the con­
struction and operation o f transmission and receiving
equipm ent. Courses in m athem atics, science, and
electronics, and special courses that are designed to
prepare students for the FC C ’s license test are good
preparation. Most persons begin their careers in small
stations; larger stations often seek experienced person­
nel.
Drafters. Specialized training in technical institutes,
ju n io r and com m unity colleges, extension divisions of
universities, and vocational and technical high schools
generally provides the best preparation for beginning
drafters. The necessary skills also may be acquired by
com bining on-the-job training program s with part-tim e
schooling, th ro u gh 3- o r 4 -y e ar ap p ren ticesh ip
program s, or in the A rm ed Forces. A high school
diplom a usually is required.
panies. Because electrical wires usually are color
coded, applicants must not be color blind.

Engineering and science technicians. M any com bina­
tions of education and work experience qualify in­
dividuals for these occupations, but most employers
prefer applicants who have had some specialized tech­
nical training. This specialized training consists of 1 to
4 years of full-time study at a technical institute, junior
or com m unity college, extension division o f a college or
university, or vocational-technical high school. T rain ­
ing also can be acquired on the job, through part-tim e
courses in postsecondary schools, or through corre­
spondence school courses. Experience in technical jobs
in the Arm ed Forces also can be good preparation. A
high school diplom a usually is required.

Central office equipm ent installers. These workers
learn their skills on the job. New em ployees attend
classes the first few weeks to learn basic installation
and then begin on-the-job training. It usually takes
several years to become a skilled installer. A high
school diplom a generally is preferred. Because electri­
cal wires are color coded, applicants must not be color
blind.
L ine installers and cable splicers. These workers
usu ally are tra in e d on the jo b . C lassroom s are
equipped with actual telephone apparatus, including
poles and other fixtures to sim ulate working conditions.
After several weeks, trainees generally are assigned to
a crew for on-the-job training under a line supervisor.
Some small independent telephone com panies, p a r­
ticularly in rural areas, rely on local vocational and
technical schools for classroom training. State em ploy­
ment agencies provide classroom training for a few 4year apprenticeships. Training in installing telephone
systems in the Arm ed Forces is helpful. Because wires
are color coded, applicants m ust not be color blind.

Mechanics and Repairers
Telephone Craft Occupations
Central office craft occupations. Though employees
such as telephone operators or line installers generally
fill trainee jobs, occasionally workers are hired from
outside. New craft workers receive both classroom in­
struction and on-the-job training. Some vocational
schools, particularly those in rural areas served by
sm all independent telephone com panies, also offer
training. A few people learn these crafts through ap ­
prenticeship program s designed by State employm ent
agencies in conjunction with local telephone com ­




Telephone and P B X installers and repairers. These
workers are trained on the job. Telephone com panies
13

provide several weeks of classroom instruction supple­
mented by on-the-job training. M any small independ­
ent telephone com panies, particularly in rural areas,
rely on local vocational and technical schools to train
workers. State em ploym ent agencies provide classroom
training for a few 4-year apprenticeships. Because
telephone wires are color coded, applicants must not be
color blind. A high school diplom a is preferred.

Other Mechanics and Repairers
A ir -c o n d itio n in g , refrig era tio n , and heating m e ­
chanics. Most w orkers start as helpers and learn their
skills on the job in about 4 years. A few learn the
trade through a 4-year apprenticeship program. In a d ­
dition, m any high schools, vocational schools, and
ju n io r colleges o ffer courses in air-co n d itio n in g ,
refrigeration, and other subjects that prepare students
for entry jobs. M any em ployers prefer graduates of
these program s because they require less on-the-job
training. W hen hiring helpers, employers generally
prefer high school graduates. A diplom a is required for
entry into apprenticeship programs.
A ppliance repairers. Form al training in appliance
rep air is available in some vocational and technical
schools and com m unity colleges. G raduates of these
program s still need about 3 years of on-the-job ex ­
perience to learn the trade. A high school diplom a
usually is required.
com panies that m anufacture pinsetters. It usually takes
1 to 2 years of experience to learn the job thoroughly.
Em ployers prefer to hire high school graduates.

A u to m o b ile body repairers. Although most repairers
learn this skill inform ally through 3 to 4 years of onthe-job training, com pletion of a 3- or 4-year appren­
ticeship is recom m ended. High school graduation is
considered an asset.

Business m achine repairers. These workers usually are
hired as trainees and taught their skills on the job.
T rainees who work in a m anufacturer’s branch office or
for a franchised d ea le r usually receive several weeks to
several months of training at a school sponsored by the
m anufacturer. Training offered by independent repair
shops generally is less form al, with trainees com pleting
a self-study course and receiving on-the-job training
from an experienced repairer. Applicants m ust be high
school graduates, and some em ployers require at least
1 year of technical training in basic electricity or
electronics. Em ployers agree that electronics training
received in the A rm ed Forces is excellent preparation.
G ood eyesight, including color vision, and good h e a r­
ing are im portant.

A u to m o b ile mechanics. Most autom obile mechanics
learn their trad e through 3 to 4 years of on-the-job ex ­
perience, but additional tim e may be needed to learn a
difficult specialty such as autom atic transmission
repair. Training authorities usually recom m end com ­
pletion of a 3- or 4-year apprenticeship program .
A utom obile m echanic training received in the Arm ed
Forces is good preparation. A high school diplom a is
preferred.
Boat-engine mechanics. Most m echanics learn on the
job. G enerally 2 to 3 years of experience are required
to becom e skilled in repairing both outboard and in­
board motors. A high school diplom a is preferred by
employers.

E lectric sign repairers. Most are trained inform ally on
the job. Some learn their skills through 4-year app ren ­
ticeship program s as a sign repairer or electrician.
Em ployers prefer high school graduates. M any cities
require repairers to be licensed; applicants must pass
an exam ination on electrical theory and local electric
codes.

B o w lin g -p in -m a c h in e m echanics. T hese w orkers
usually start as assistant m echanics or pinchasers and
learn their skills on the job. Bowling alleys sometimes
send their m echanics to training seminars conducted by



14

Farm equipm ent mechanics. Most begin as helpers and
learn their skills on the job. Employers generally prefer
high school graduates who have a farm background.
Usually, at least 3 years of on-the-job experience are
necessary to becom e fully skilled. Some m echanics
com plete a 3- or 4-year apprenticeship program , while
others learn through a vocational program.

training lare needed to qualify as a piano or pipeorgan
technician. A pplicants for jobs as electronic organ tech ­
nicians usually need form al training in electronics
which is available in technical schools, junior colleges,
and the Arm ed Forces. A sm all num ber of technical
schools and colleges offer courses in piano technology.
Home study (correspondence school) courses in piano
technology also are available. Employers prefer high
school graduates.

Furniture upholsterers. The most common way to learn
this trade is to work as a helper in an upholstery shop
for about 3 years. V ocational or high school courses in
upholstery provide a good background, but experience
still is necessary to refine one’s skills.

Shoe repairers. These w orkers generally start as helpers
and are trained on the job in shoe repair shops. It takes
up to 2 years to learn all aspects of the job. Some
repairers learn the trad e in vocational school but a d d i­
tional training under an experienced shoe rep airer
generally is helpful.

Industrial m achinery repairers. Most begin as helpers
and rotate from job to job for several years. Others
le a rn th e ir tra d e th ro u g h 4 -y e ar a p p ren ticesh ip
program s. A high school diplom a is preferred.

Television and radio service technicians. Em ployers
usually hire persons who have had form al training in
electronics while in high school, vocational school, or
junior college. A rm ed Forces electronics training is
useful, although em ployers may require additional
training in television electronics. Up to 4 years of onthe-job training are necessary to become skilled in most
types of repair work. A high school diplom a generally is
required. Some States have licensing requirem ents.

Jewelers. These workers generally learn the jew elry
trad e on the job or in technical schools. In precious
jewelry factories, 3- to 4-year apprenticeships are
a v a ila b le fo r m an y s k ille d o c c u p a tio n s . Som e
m a n u fa c tu re rs sponsor train in g courses for th e ir
em ployees at local vocational schools. V ocational
school courses in jew elry m aking and jew elry repair are
a good source of training for someone outside the in­
dustry. Em ployers prefer high school graduates.

Truck mechanics and bus mechanics. Most learn their
skills on the job in 3 to 4 years, but completion o f a 4year apprenticeship program is recom m ended. A high
school diplom a is preferred by em ployers and strongly
recom m ended for applicants for apprenticeships. For
some jobs that require drivers, m echanics m ust have a
chauffeur’s license.

Locksm iths. O n-the-job training lasting up to 4 years is
the recom m ended way to learn this trade. A dditional
training is necessary to service electronic security
systems. Com pletion of a 1- or 2-year vocational or cor­
respondence school course is an advantage. W hen hir­
ing trainees, em ployers prefer high school graduates.
Some cities require locksmiths to be licensed.

Vending machine mechanics. Most m echanics learn
their trade while working as general shop helpers or
vending machine route drivers. U p to 3 years of on-thejob training are required to becom e a skilled m echanic.
Some m echanics train through 3-year apprenticeships.
A high school diplom a is preferred by employers. A
commercial driver’s license and a good driving record
are necessary.

M aintenance electricians. Most acquire their skills on
the job or through 4-year apprenticeship program s. It
m ay take more than 4 years to learn the trad e infor­
mally. A high school diplom a usually is required.
M any cities and counties require electricians to be
licensed; an applicant m ust pass a written exam ination
and may have to dem onstrate skills.

Watch repairers. Most learn their trade through 1- to 3year courses offered by watch repair schools. Others
learn on the job in about 3 years. A high school
diploma is preferred. A few States require w atch
repairers to be licensed; applicants must pass a written
test and a bench exam ination.

M otorcycle mechanics. Most motorcycle m echanics
learn their trade on the job. G enerally, 2 to 3 years of
on-the-job training are necessary to become skilled in
all aspects of m otorcycle repair. Although a high school
diplom a is often preferred, m any em ployers will hire
trainees who have m echanical aptitude or who exhibit
a genuine interest in m otorcycles and in learning the
work.

Health Occupations
Dental Occupations
D ental assistants: Most learn their skills on the job, but
an increasing num ber are trained through 1- or 2-year

Piano and organ tuners and repairers. Most learn their
trad e on the job. G enerally, 4 to 5 years of on-the-job




15

train most E E G technologists and technicians on the
job, training authorities recom m end completion of a
form al 1- to 2-year training program at a college, junior
college, m edical school, hospital, or vocational or tech ­
nical school. High school graduation is required for this
work.
Em ergency m edical technicians (E M T ’s). Applicants
m ust complete the 81-hour program designed by the
U.S. D epartm ent of Transportation or its equivalent
offered in all States by police, fire, and health d ep a rt­
ments; in hospitals; and in m edical schools, colleges,
and universities. A high school diplom a and a valid
driver’s license are required to enter such a program .
“ M edic” training in the A rm ed Forces also is good
preparation.
M ed ica l la b o ra to ry w orkers. M ed ical la b o ra to ry
assistants usually are trained on the job. In recent
years, however, an increasing num ber have com pleted
1-year training program s at a hospital, junior college,
or vocational school. M any o f these schools also offer
2-year training program s for technicians. Som e workers
are trained in the Arm ed Forces. Most technologists
have com pleted 4 years of college, including 12 months
in m edical technology.
M edical record technicians and clerks. High school
graduates who have basic secretarial skills can enter
the m edical record field as clerks. About 1 month of
on-the-job training is needed to learn routine tasks.
T he Am erican M edical R ecord Association (A M R A )
offers a correspondence course in m edical transcrip­
tion; the certificate aw arded upon successful com ple­
tion of the course is helpful in applying for a job as a
clerk. Most em ployers prefer to fill technician positions
with graduates of 2-year associate degree program s in
m edical record technology.

program s offered in ju n io r and community colleges and
in vocational and technical schools. A high school
diplom a is required. T raining also is available in the
A rm ed Forces. Individuals who have had formal train ­
ing generally have an advantage when seeking a job.
D ental laboratory technicians. Many technicians learn
their skills on the job, usually in 3 to 4 years. High
school graduates are preferred. Persons who receive
d ental laboratory training in the Arm ed Forces usually
qualify for civilian jobs as technicians. After com plet­
ing a 2-year training program in a junior college, col­
lege, or vocational or technical school, the trainee may
need about 3 years of experience to become fully
qualified. Some technicians complete apprenticeship
programs.

Operating room technicians. Most operating room
technicians are trained in vocational and technical
schools, hospitals, and com m unity and junior colleges.
G enerally these program s last from 9 months to 1 year,
but some junior college program s last 2 years and lead
to an associate degree. Some technicians are trained on
the job. Depending on the individual’s qualifications
and the extent and difficulty o f the work assigned,
training ranges from 6 weeks to 1 year. Applicants who
have worked as nursing aides or practical nurses may
be preferred. Some operating room technicians are
trained in the A rm ed Forces. A high school diplom a
generally is required.

Medical Technologist, Technician,
and Assistant Occupations
Electrocardiograph (E K G ) technicians. G enerally,
EK G technicians are train ed on the job for 1 month to 1
year by an E K G supervisor or a cardiologist. V oca­
tional schools and ju n io r and community colleges offer
formal 1- to 2-year training program s. Training also is
available in the A rm ed Forces. Generally, a high
school diplom a is required.

Opto m etric assistants. Most optom etric assistants are
trained on the job, but training also can be acquired
through 1- or 2-year courses in ju n io r colleges. A high
school diplom a or its equivalent is preferred.

E le c tro e n cep h a lo g ra p h ic (E E G ) tech n o lo g ists and
technicians. A lthough experienced E E G personnel



16

R espiratory therapy workers. T here are three levels of
workers—therapists, technicians, and assistants. For­
m al training beyond high school which is required for
therapists and technicians may be obtained in colleges
an d u n iv ersities, ju n io r colleges, an d hospitals.
G enerally, training program s for technicians last 12
m onths while program s for therapists last 18 to 24
months or longer. Assistants are trained on the job.
Some em ployers prefer applicants who have a high
school diplom a.

Social Service Occupations
H om em aker-hom e health aides. H om em aker-hom e
health aides must be able to read and write but high
school graduation generally is not required. Some
employers hire only experienced nursing aides; others
require at least a y ear’s experience as a nursing aide in
a hospital or nursing hom e.
Social service aides. Social service aides are trained on
the job. An aid e’s education usually determ ines the
level of responsibility. For exam ple, persons who have
a grade school education may become clerks while
those who have a college degree may assume some
d u tie s n o rm a lly p e rfo rm e d by s o c ia l w o rk e rs .
Employers also consider an applicant’s desire to help
people and his or her ability to com m unicate with com ­
m unity agencies and clients. An individual’s potential
for advancem ent and need for work also may be con­
sidered.

Nursing Occupations
Licensed practical nurses. All States require applicants
for licenses as practical nurses to com plete a S tateapproved course in practical nursing and to pass an ex­
am ination. E ducational requirem ents for enrollm ent in
these courses vary by State and range from completion
o f eighth or ninth grade to high school graduation.
G enerally, junior colleges, local hospitals, health agen­
cies, and vocational schools offer the 1-year course.

N ursing aides, orderlies, and attendants. Although
some em ployers prefer high school graduates, a
diplom a is not required. Training usually is acquired
on the job, often in com bination with classroom instruc­
tion.

Performing Arts, Design, and
Communications Occupations
Performing Artists
A ctors and actresses. Form al training in acting is in­
creasingly necessary to enter the field. Training can be
obtained at dram atic arts schools, located chiefly in
New York, and in hundreds of colleges and universities
throughout the country. Experience is im portant; p a r­
ticipating in school or com m unity productions is ex­
cellent preparation.

Therapy and Rehabilitation Occupations
Occupational therapy assistants and aides. Most oc­
cupational therapy assistants graduate from 1- or 2year junior college program s or com plete a program in
the A rm ed Forces. Some learn their skills in vocational
an d te c h n ic a l program s. A pplicants for train in g
program s m ust have a high school diplom a or its
equivalent. Hospitals and other health care facilities
train occupational therapy aides on the job.

Dancers. Serious training at a dance school or through
private lessons should begin at age 12, especially for
b allet dan cers. T ra in in g an d p ra ctice co n tin u e
throughout a d an cer’s career. M any colleges and
universities offer dance instruction.

P hysical th era p ist assistants and aides. P hysical
therapist assistants must graduate from an approved 2year associate degree program and pass a written ex­
am ination. Physical therapist aides train on the job and
generally m ust be high school graduates or the
equivalent.

Musicians. Studying an instrum ent, either through
school or private lessons, should begin at an early age.
More advanced training can be acquired through
further study under an accom plished m usician, in a
college or university which has a strong music program ,
or in a music conservatory.

Other Health Occupations

Singers. As a rule, intensive voice training should not
begin until after the individual has m atured physically.
Voice training can be obtained through private lessons
or in a music conservatory or departm ent of music in a
college or university. A background in music theory
and history is helpful for persons interested in singing
professionally, although form al voice training is not es­
sential for a successful career in popular music.

D ispensing opticians. Most learn their skills on the job.
Em ployers prefer high school graduates, and g ra d u a­
tion is required for form al training program s. Some dis­
pensing opticians learn their skills through 2- to 4 -year
apprenticeship programs. In 1978, dispensing opticians
in 20 States had to pass an exam ination to obtain the
req u ired license.




17

Design Occupations

reprints follows. A flyer that cross-references all Oc­
cupational O utlook H andbook occupations and indus­
tries to the reprints in which they appear may be o b ­
tained by using the reprint order form on the back page
of this leaflet.

Display workers. Most display workers learn their
trad e on the job in 1 or 2 years. A high school diploma
usually is required, and some employers prefer appli­
cants who have studied interior decorating, fashion
design, or art. M any high schools, vocational schools,
and ju n io r colleges offer these courses.

Occupational Outlook Reprints, 1980-81 Edition

Floral designers. Although there are no minimum
educational requirem ents, most employers prefer high
school graduates. Training usually takes place on the
job. However, an increasing num ber of these workers
attend adult education program s, junior colleges, or
com m ercial floral design schools.

Bulletin No.
2075-1
2075-2
2075-3
2075-4
2075-5
2075-6

Ordering Occupational Outlook Handbook
Reprints
T here are 42 reprints from the Occupational O ut­
lo o k H andbook, 1980-81 Edition, available for order.
Each reprint contains a group of related occupational
an d in d u stria l statem en ts. For exam ple, re p rin t
2 0 7 5 -3 5 , C o m m u n icatio n s O ccupations, includes
statem ents on broadcast technicians, new spaper report­
ers, photographers, public relations workers, radio and
television announcers, the radio and television broad­
casting industry, and technical writers. A list of all




2075-7
2075-8
2075-9
2075-10
2075-11
2075-12
2075-13
2075-14
2075-15
2075-16
2075-17
2075-18
2075-19
2075-20
2075-21
2075-22
2075-23
2075-24
2075-25
2075-26
2075-27
2075-28

2075-29

18

Title
Tom orrow ’s Jobs
M etalworking O ccupations
Printing and Publishing Occupations
Factory Production Occupations
C lerical O ccupations
Office M achine and C om puter O c­
cupations
Banking and Insurance O ccupations
Business O ccupations
Service Occupations
Food M erchandising O ccupations
Protective and R elated Service O c­
cupations
Education and R elated O ccupations
Sales O ccupations
Construction O ccupations — Struc­
tural
Construction O ccupations — Finish­
ing
Air and W ater Transportation O c­
cupations
R ailroad O ccupations
Driving O ccupations
Environm ental Scientists and C on­
servation O ccupations
Engineering and R elated O ccupa­
tions
Physical and Life Scientists
M athem atics and R elated O ccupa­
tions
Public Utilities O ccupations
M o to r V e h ic le a n d M a c h in e ry
R epairers
M achine R epairers and O perators
Small Business O ccupations
H ealth Practitioners
H ealth O ccupations
D e n ta l a u x i l i a r i e s , n u r s i n g ,
therapy and rehabilitation, health
services adm inistration
H ealth O ccupations
M edical technologists, technicians,
an d assistan ts, d isp en sin g o p ti­
cians, ophthalm ic laboratory tech ­
nicians, m edical record personnel

A

2075-30
2075-31
2075-32
2075-33
2075-34
2075-35
2075-36
2075-37
2075-38

2075-39
2075-40

2075-41

2075-42

Bookbinders and bindery w orkers................................ 3
Bookkeeping w orkers........................................................ 5
Bowling-pin-machine m ech a n ics................................ 25
Brake o p e ra to rs .............................................................. 17
Bricklayers, stonemasons, and
m arblesetters................................................................. 14
Broadcast tech n ician s......................................... 20 or 35
Building c u sto d ia n s.......................................................... 9
Business machine r e p a ir e r s ................................ 6 or 25
C arp en ters......................................................................... 14
C a sh ie rs............................................................................. 10
Cement masons and terrazzo w o rk e rs ..................... 14
Central office craft occupations.................................. 23
Central office equipm ent in stalle rs............................ 23
Claim representatives........................................................ 7
Collection w o rk e rs ............................................................ 8
Com positors......................................................................... 3
Computer operating p erso n n el...................................... 6
C onductors....................... ................................................. 17
Construction in sp ecto rs................. ................................ 11
Construction labo rers...................................................... 14
Cooks and c h e fs .............................................................. 10
C orem akers.............................................................. 2 or 39
Correction o ffic e rs.......................................................... 11
Cosmetologists...... ............................................................ 26
D a n c e rs ............................................................................. 33
D ental assistants.............................................................. 28
D ental laboratory te c h n ic ia n s .................................... 28
Dining room attendants and
d ish w a sh e rs................................................................. 10
Dispensing o p tic ia n s ...................................................... 29
Display w o rk e rs .............................................................. 34
D ra fte rs ............................................... ............................. 20
Drywall installers and fin ish e rs.................................. 15
EEG technologists and
te c h n ic ia n s................................................................... 29
EKG technicians.............................................................. 29
Electric sign re p a ire r s .................................................... 25
Electricians (c o n stru c tio n )........................................... 15
E le c tro p la te rs..................................................................... 4
Electrotypers and stere o ty p e rs....................................... 3
Elevator constructors...................................................... 14
Emergency m edical technicians.................................. 29
Engineering and science technicians.......................... 20
Farm equipm ent m e c h a n ic s......................................... 24
File c l e r k s ........................................................................... 5
Firefighters......................................................................... 11
R ight atten d an ts.............................................................. 16
Floor covering in s ta lle rs ............................................... 15
Floral d e s ig n e rs .............................. ............................... 34
Food counter w o rk e rs .................................................... 10
Forestry technicians............................................. 19 or 36
Forge shop occupations............... .................................... 2
Furniture upholsterers.................................................... 26
Gasoline service station
attendants. .*>................................................................. 24

Lawyers, City M anagers, and Social
Science Occupations
C ounseling and R elated O ccupations
Social Service Occupations
Perform ing Arts and Entertainm entR elated Occupations
Design Occupations
Com m unications Occupations
A griculture and Logging and L u m ­
ber Mill Products Industries
Energy-Producing Industries
P e tro le u m R e fin in g , I n d u s tr ia l
Chem ical, D rug, and Paper and
Allied Products Industries
A lu m in u m , Iro n an d S teel, an d
F oundry Industries
A ircraft, Missile, and Spacecraft,
Office M achine and C om puter,
Electronics, and M otor V ehicle
and Equipm ent M anufacturing In ­
dustries
A pparel, Baking, Laundry and Dry
Cleaning, and Textile Mill Prod­
ucts Industries
G overnm ent Occupations

T he following is an alphabetical listing of the o ccupa­
tions included in this leaflet. O ccupations are crossreferenced to the H an d b o o k reprint in which they a p ­
pear.
Actors and actresses............................ ........................... 33
A ir traffic co n tro llers..................................................... 16
A ir-conditioning, refrigeration, and
heating m e c h a n ic s ..................................................... 15
A irplane m ech a n ics........................................................ 16
Airplane p i l o t s ................................................................ 16
A ppliance re p a ire r s ........................................................ 25
A ssem blers...........................................................................4
Autom obile body re p a ire rs........................................... 24
A utom obile m e c h a n ic s ................................................. 24
Autom obile p a in te r s ........................................................24
Autom obile parts counter w o rk e rs ............................ 24
Autom obile sales w o rk ers............................................. 13
Autom obile service advisors........................................ 24
Bank clerks . ....................................................................... 7
Bank te lle r s ......................................................................... 7
B arb e rs............................................................................... 26
B arten d e rs......................................................................... 10
Bellhops and bell c a p ta in s ............................................. 9
B lacksm ith s......................................................................... 2
B lue-collar w orker supervisors...................................... 4
Boat-engine m e c h a n ic s................................................. 24
Boilerm aking occupations............................................... 4
Boiler te n d e r s ..................................................................... 4




19

G la z ie rs ................................................................ ______ 15
G u a r d s ............................................................................... 11
H om em aker-hom e health a id e s.................................. 32
Hotel front office clerks................................................... 9
Hotel housekeepers and assistants................................ 9
Industrial m achinery re p a ire rs...................................... 4
Inspectors (m an u factu rin g )............................................ 4
Instrum ent m akers (m ech an ical).................................. 2
Insulation w o rk e rs ......................................................... 15
Intercity b u s d riv e r s ....................................................... 18
Iron w o rk ers...................................................................... 14
Je w e le rs............................................................................. 26
L a th e rs ............................................................................... 15
Library technicians and assistants............................. 12
Licensed practical n u r s e s ............................................ 28
Line installers and cable
s p lic e rs ........................................................................... 23
L ith o g ra p h e rs .................................................................... 3
Local transit busdrivers................................................. 18
Local tru c k d riv e rs ......................................................... 18
Locksm iths........................................................................ 26
Locomotive e n g in e e rs ................................................... 17
Long-distance tru ck d riv e rs.......................................... 18
M achine tool o p e ra to rs ................................................... 2
Machinists, all-a ro u n d ..................................................... 2
M ail c a r r ie r s ...................................................................... 5
M aintenance electricians.................................................4
M e a tc u tte rs...................................................................... 10
M edical laboratory w o rk e rs........................................ 29
M edical record technicians
and c l e r k s .................................................................... 29
M erchant m arine o ffic e rs ............................................ 16
M erchant m arine s a ilo rs .............................................. 16
M illw rights.......................................................................... 4
M o d e ls ............................................................................... 33
M o ld e rs .................................................................... 2 or 39
Motion picture p ro jectio n ists...................................... 25
Motorcycle m ech an ics................................................... 24
M usicians............................ .............................................. 33
Nursing aides, orderlies, and
atten dants...................................................................... 28
O ccupational therapy assistants
and a id e s ...................................................................... 28
Office m achine o p e ra to rs ...................................... 5 or 6
O perating en g in ee rs....................................................... 14
Operating room te c h n ic ia n s........................................ 29
Ophthalm ic laboratory tech n ic ia n s........................... 29
O ptom etric assistan ts..................................................... 29
Painters and p a p e rh a n g e rs .......................................... 15
Parking a tte n d a n ts ......................................................... 18
P atternm akers.......................................................... 2 or 39
Pest c o n tro lle rs.................................. ............................... 9
P h o to e n g rav e rs.................................................................. 3
Photographic laboratory o cc u p atio n s......................... 3




Physical therapist assistants
and a id e s ....................................................................... 28
Piano and organ tuners
and re p a ire rs ................................................................ 26
P la ste re rs........................................................................... 15
Plum bers and p ip efitters............................................... 14
Police o ffic e rs.................................................................. 11
Postal clerks......................................................................... 5
Power truck o p e ra to rs ......................................................4
Printing press operators
and assistants................................................................... 3
Production p a in te r s .......................................................... 4
R eal estate agents and b r o k e r s .................................. 13
R ecep tio n ists................... ................................................... 5
Reservation and passenger agents.............................. 16
Respiratory therapy w o r k e r s ...................................... 29
R etail trad e sales w orkers............................................. 13
R o o fers............................................................................... 14
R oute d riv e r s ............................ ........................... 13 or 18
Secretaries and stenographers........................................... 5
Setup workers (m achine to o ls)....................................... 2
Sheet-m etal w o rk ers..........................................................15
Shipping and receiving c l e r k s ....................................... 5
Shoe re p a ire rs................................................................... 26
Shop t r a d e s ....................................................................... 17
Signal departm ent w o rk ers........................................... 17
S in g e rs ............................................................................... 33
Social service a i d e s ....................................................... 32
State police o ffic e rs........................................................ 11
Station a g e n ts .................................................................. 17
Stationary engineers..........................................................4
Statistical c le r k s ................................................................ 5
Stock c le r k s ......................................................................... 5
Taxicab d riv ers................................................................ 18
T eacher a id e s .................................................................. 12
Telegraphers, telephoners, and
tower o p erato rs............................................................ 17
Telephone and PBX installers
and re p a ire rs................................................................ 23
Telephone o p e r a to r s ...................................................... 23
Television and radio service
technicians..................................................................... 26
Tilesetters........................................................................... 15
Tool-and-die m akers ..................................................... 2
T ravel agents..................................................................... 13
Truck m echanics and bus m echanics........................ 24
Typists................................................................................... 5
Vending machine m e c h a n ic s...................................... 25
W aiters and w a itre s s e s ................................................. 10
W astewater treatm ent plant
operators........................................................................... 4
W atch repairers................................................................ 26
W elders.................................................................................. 2
W holesale trade sales w o rk ers.................................... 13

20

U.S. Department of Labor
Bureau of Labor Statistics
Washington, D.C. 20212

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U.S. Department of Labor
Third Class Mail

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