News & Resources

Groundwork USA and National Park Service Offer Paid Historic Preservation Apprenticeships
June 6, 2019 | |

Groundwork USA is currently recruiting applicants for its Traditional Trades Apprenticeship Program (TTAP), a 5-month, paid apprenticeship in collaboration with the National Park Service.  As a paid intern working in Virginia, you’ll have the opportunity to learn from experts and develop the skills to enter the construction trades industry, all while preserving historical structures in our national parks.


What kinds of things will I learn?

  • Historic Preservation techniques: How to preserve and restore historic buildings and structures
    • Topics are site-specific, but may include woodworking, painting, masonry, glazing, etc.
  • How to use hand tools and power tools correctly
  • Material handling and project management
  • Construction drawing and construction math
  • Construction industry standards and procedures (You will receive your OSHA 10 card.)

Additional topics will be interwoven into the training including: why stewardship is important, introduction to the National Park Service mission, and introduction to trades such as historic carpentry, and historic masonry.

Where will the training and work take place?

Participants will spend two weeks at the National Park Service’s Historic Preservation Training Center in Frederick, Maryland. (Don’t worry, we cover your hotel costs too!) You will then be assigned to one of three work sites, depending on where you live and your availability:

  • Richmond National Battlefield Park (Richmond, Virginia)
  • Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park  (Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania, Virginia)
  • Petersburg National Battlefield (Petersburg, Virginia)

You will be working alongside National Park Service professionals at one of these three park sites.

In addition to learning construction, what other benefits are there?

  • Get paid $16 an hour while you learn. You will be paid (bi-monthly) for all 20 weeks of training ($12,800 total).
  • Complete the OSHA 10 course and receive your work-site safety card (needed for work at construction sites).
  • You’ll be eligible to apply for government jobs (check out for examples).
  • You’ll also receive leads to government jobs and assistance with resumes and your construction references.
  • Ability to attend Groundwork USA’s National Youth Summit, where you can network with conservationists from across the US.


Who is eligible to apply?

  • Age: Young adults aged 18-30. Veterans to age 35 with Honorable Discharge. Women and LGBTQ encouraged to apply.
  • Nationality: United States citizen or legal resident. You must be able to communicate in and read English.
  • Education Level: No minimum requirement (however, you must pass a basic reading and math test).
  • Preconceptions of Historic Preservation / Traditional Trades: Has a career interest in building trade skills (carpentry, masonry, etc.) and/or historic preservation, but no experience is required.
  • Attitude: Comfortable working outside in varying weather conditions and at heights, willing to work hard and get dirty, loves the outdoors and working with their hands. Some days may be 10 hours long.
  • Time Commitment: Can commit to a five-month experience (June 17–November 1) of combined training and hands-on work, work full time, and commit to two weeks of training away from home.
  • Other: Be substance-free in accordance with a drug-free workplace, pass a criminal history check as prescribed by the Serve America Act, adhere to safety requirements and expectations. In addition, you’ll need to complete Groundwork USA requirements (turn in timesheets, complete reports and forms, etc.).

To Apply:

Deadline to apply: June 12, 2019

Have questions:
Contact Curt Collier, (914) 648-0009, or Joseph Leyba