Columbia College Apprenticeship Initiative Columbia College Apprenticeship Initiative



The Columbia College Apprenticeship Initiative is a grant-funded program that supports the development and implementation of new and innovative apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship models. These programs support the local workforce and provide educational opportunities to current and future Columbia College students.

Pre-Apprenticeship Programs

Emergency Medical Services Pre-Apprenticeship:

The Columbia College Emergency Medical Services Pre-Apprenticeship is a program designed for students who are interested in the Emergency Medical Services field.  Pre-apprentices in the initiative will complete Columbia College’s Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) courses and receive CPR, EMS and EMT certificates. They will also engage in workshops, field trips, job shadowing, and soft skills education. Those who complete the program will have a clear path to become an apprentice in the Emergency Medical Services field through the California Firefighter Joint Apprenticeship Committee (Cal-JAC).  Columbia College has established a collaborative partnership with Cal-JAC that focuses on preparing EMS pre-apprentices for entry into one of Cal-JAC’s registered apprenticeship programs.

Fire Science Pre-Apprenticeship:

Interested in a career in firefighting? The  Fire Science Pre-Apprenticeship  is designed to provide an introduction to careers in fire science through hands-on experiences, workshops, field trips, and more. After completing the  Pre-Apprenticeship  and the  Columbia College Fire Academy , either simultaneously or consecutively, participants will have the opportunity to apply to  Cal-JAC , the state's only registered apprenticeship in firefighting.

      How to Apply

    • Fill out the  application, print, sign, and send it to: or 11600 Columbia College Dr., Sonora, CA 95370
    • Call 209-588-5269 for questions!

Apprenticeship Programs

Apprentices have the opportunity to complete coursework at Columbia College while working as paid apprentices at one of our approved apprenticeship employers, resulting in a Certified Apprentice certification through the California Division of Apprenticeship Standards as well as Certificates of Achievement and/or Skills Attainment Certificates through Columbia College. Students will be set up for career advancement and/or higher education at Columbia College and beyond.

Current Apprenticeship Programs:

Child Development

A two-year program that results in an Associate Teacher Permit and a Certificate of Completion as a Registered Apprentice through the Division of Apprenticeship Standards. Apprentices work as aides, assistants, or associate teachers in infant, toddler, or preschool classrooms or elementary after-school programs and are strongly encouraged to pursue additional coursework toward an Associate of Science Degree in Early Childhood Education.

Forestry and Conservation On-The-Job Training

A two-year program that results in a Certificate of Achievement in the Management and Restoration of Fire-Adapted Ecosystems as well as a Certificate of Completion through the State of California Division of Apprenticeship Standards. Trainnee's work as Forest Conservation Technicians and are given the opportunity to take additional coursework toward an Associate of Science Degree.

Hospitality Management

The Hospitality Management Apprenticeship program offers three emphasis to choose from towards a Certificate of Achievement under Hospitality Supervision as well as a Certificate of Completion from the State of California, Division of Apprenticeship Standards. Apprentices are connected to an employer partner for paid on-the-job training that will implement the competency skills taught in the classroom labs.

Benefits of Participation

  • Hands-on work experience while attending college
  • Paid on-the-job training
  • Tuition and fees paid (after financial aid is applied)
  • Textbooks provided for apprenticeship-specific courses
  • Program staff available for support

How to Apply


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