Brickmason & Blockmason
What can a Brickmason & Blockmason do?
They can make brick houses and schools.
They can build block walls and buildings.
Salary and Benefits
According to the BLS, Brickmasons and Blockmasons earned a median wage of $46,800 in 2011, or $22.50 per hour. The best-paid earned a median wage of $80,570, while the lowest-paid earned less than $28,950 in 2011. Apprentice masons earn roughly half of journeymen wages. Commercial jobs tend to be more complex, requiring compliance with extensive government and project design and building protocols. Masons who work on commercial jobs tend to be more experienced and earn higher salaries than residential masons.
Education & Training
Brickmasons and stonemasons can learn on the job as well as from one-year or two-year training programs at technical colleges. Many also complete extensive apprenticeship programs. The programs are free to apprentices and funded by employers and unions. They usually last three or four years and require at least 144 hours of classroom training each year and 2,000 hours of on-the-job experience.
Working Conditions & Pros/Cons
The work is usually outdoors and seasonal in colder climates. Work schedules tend to be standard 40-hour weeks but can be thrown off by inclement weather and project deadlines. Many self-employed masons work on smaller residential jobs. The work is physically demanding, usually performed on scaffolding, and requires manual dexterity, attention to design detail, and stamina. Working outdoors and with heavy and sharp-edged stone and brick, masons suffer much higher injury and illness rates than industry averages, with muscle strains being the most common injury. Masons often enjoy the design challenges of their job.
Job and Promotion Opportunities
High school training programs increasingly are a conduit for getting into masonry craft jobs. So are apprenticeship programs. Having a friend or relative in the construction trades industry is also a common way new entrants learn of job opportunities and apply for work