Frequently Asked Questions
What key attributes are needed by an apprentice?
Motivated, physically fit and mechanically inclined are all good qualities to have when applying to become a member of our Pre-apprenticeship Program. As we have indicated, essential soft skills are as important. It is our plan to teach you to become an outstanding 309A Construction and Maintenance electrician. We expect that you will already possess the soft skills we have identified.
Our educational requirements have been part of our policies from the very beginning and we have verified over the past 45 + years that applicants who do not have the necessary educational background will NOT be successful in the Program, and will find it extremely difficult in Trade School.
We have been in communication with the educational community and know the content and skills learned in each of the Ontario High School credits listed below.
When you arrive at Stage 2 you MUST provide an official Ontario Ministry of Education transcript, Credit Counselling Summary or a Comprehensive I.C.A.S. report verifying you have successfully completed ONE course from EACH of the following subjects areas:
MHF 4U, MGA 4U, MCV 4U, MDM 4U, MCT 4C,
MCB 4U, MTT 4G, MAT 4A, MCR 3U,
MAP 4C (min 70%),
MCF 3M (min 65%)
||ENG 4U, ENG 4C,
ENG 4A, ENG 4G
||SPH 4U, SPH 4C, SPH 3U,
SPH 4A, SPH 4G
If you were Educated outside of the Province of Ontario you must provide a Comprehensive Report from ICAS to verify your Education before you will be allowed to complete an application (Please see Frequently Asked Questions for further clarification).
You are also required to bring a typed résumé with 3 references listed (that are not a personal friend or related to you by blood or marriage) and a cover letter outlining why you would like to be a part of our electrical Pre-apprenticeship Program.
Note: A “GED” (General Education Development) Certificate is NOT a High School Diploma, it is an equivalency, and may be accepted in special situations as a substitute for the Diploma ONLY (Please see Frequently Asked Questions for further clarification).
When is the next Intake?
An Intake is scheduled when there is sufficient labour demand for additional workers. The JAC is informed by the Local Joint Conference Board and then we post on this site that there will be an Intake during a specific time period in a specific location. You would have a minimum of one (1) month to gather your necessary documents.
How many people usually apply during Intake?
Over the last number of years there have been over 1000 applications completed at each Intake. Approximately 1 in 8 applicants are successful and accepted into the Program.
Why is it mandatory to have Math, English and Physics?
It has been our policy from the very beginning and we have verified over the past 45 + years that applicants who do not have the necessary educational background will NOT be successful, and will also find it extremely difficult in Trade School.
I don’t have the High School Physics but did Physics at University. Can it be substituted?
No. There are no substitutes. Because we get 1,000 applications per Intake we need to be fair, equitable and consistent in our screening of all applications. Our minimum requirements are one of the High School Math, English and Physics courses listed. We know the course content of these courses and successful completion of the 110 hours of study for each one will give you the background necessary to be successful at Trade School. Courses at University or College vary greatly in their content and may not provide you with the knowledge base required.
I have a University Degree; do I still need the High School credits?
Yes. There are no substitutes. Because we get 1,000 applications per Intake we need to be fair, equitable and consistent in our screening of all applications. Our minimum requirements are one of the High School Math, English and Physics courses listed. We know the course content of these courses and successful completion of the 110 hours of study for each one will give you the background necessary to be successful at Trade School. Courses at University or College vary greatly in their content and may not provide you with the knowledge base required.
Can I still apply to the J.A.C with just two out of the three mandatory courses?
At this point in time, the answer is yes, but due to the highly competitive nature of the application process, it is in your best interest to already have successfully completed all three of the required High School courses. If you were to be accepted into the Program with only two of the three mandatory courses, you would need to show proof of successful completion of the missing course before being invited to attend the Safety and Orientation course. Failure to complete the missing course will result in you being terminated from the program.
I came to apply but forgot my resume, can I still apply?
You will be allowed to complete Part B of the application but your package will be held and not assessed until all required documents are received in person by 3:00 pm on the last day of applications. If you do not have an official High School transcript or a Comprehensive Report from ICAS you will NOT be allowed to complete Part B of the application.
What if I don’t have the education requirements?
We suggest that you contact one of the following services in order to obtain the needed course(s):
- Your local School Boards Continuing Education Department for Adult Education Centres and night school classes.
- Independent Learning Centre (Correspondence Courses) 2180 Yonge St. Toronto, On. (416) 484-2704
What if I was educated outside of Ontario in another Province or Country and do not have my transcript?
In order for you to be eligible to apply and complete an application, you MUST obtain your official transcript from the Province or Country where you were educated. Your marks MUST then be translated and assessed for equivalency to our required Ontario High School courses. There are no exceptions.
Please contact the; International Credential Assessment Service of Canada (ICAS): 1-800-321-6021
Ask for a Comprehensive Report and state that it is for the JAC application process. This is the only Educational Assessment company in the Province that provides this detailed service. ICAS has indicated that it could take up to 25 weeks to receive your report. If this is a career you want to be part of, do NOT wait. Get your documents in to them now. Do not wait until an Intake is announced.
Will you accept a GED?
Yes, however the GED is only an equivalency document for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma. Applicants must have proof of successful completion of the three required English, Math, and Physics credits before they are able to complete an application.
I am currently in my last year of High School, I have not graduated yet. Would I still be eligible to apply?
Yes. When the Intake process begins you would apply as described on this website with the required documentation, and bring in your current High School transcript, latest Interim Reports and show us that you will be graduating this year. The Guidance Department should be able to provide you with a Credit Counselling Summary.
I applied at the last Intake and was not accepted, is my file still on record for the next Intake?
No. Each Intake is a separate process. If you applied in a previous Intake and were not successful, you will have to re-apply with all the necessary documentation again. We keep applications on file for 3 years and will retrieve your previous application and attach it to the current application when you re-apply.
Is there a waiting list that the JAC can call me when accepting applications?
No. You have to keep monitoring the JAC website for notification of the Intake process dates. Remembering that Intake is based on labour demand and once we are notified there is demand, we post the Intake dates on this site. After the Intake process is completed we have a pool of successful applicants. Those candidates wait in the selection pool and as jobs become available they are dispatched. Once the pool is depleted, and there is labour demand, another Intake would be scheduled.
What does “learn while you earn” mean?
Apprenticeships in Ontario are designed so that 80% of your learning is done on the job while under the supervision of a licensed journeyperson. Once dispatched to a company you are working on jobsites performing the tasks of a Construction and Maintenance Electrician and being paid by your employer (Contractor). The other 20% of your learning is while you are attending the three mandatory levels of Trade School.
Where will I work?
You will be working for a member company of the Greater Toronto Electrical Contractors Association. You will be dispatched by L.U.353 IBEW. The geographical area covered is from Lake Ontario north to Parry Sound, to Trenton in the east and Oakville in the west. Your employer could send you to a jobsite anywhere within this area so you MUST be able to provide your own transportation to the jobsite. Work usually begins at 7 a.m..
What kind of work will I be doing?
Our Contractors are involved in building office towers, hospitals, condominiums and commercial properties greater than 4 floors. Please look at the Links/Resources Additional Contacts sections we have provide for a more detailed explanation.
How long will it take before I’m actually on the job?
Once you are selected for the Program you are placed in a pool. Do NOT quit your current job. As jobs become available people in the pool are contacted a minimum of two (2) weeks prior to attend the Safety and Orientation Course. Selection from the pool is totally random. Once the two (2) week Safety and Orientation course is successfully completed you will then be dispatched by the IBEW to a GTECA member company. It could take a calendar year before all successful candidates could be placed.
Are you the Union?
No. We work with the IBEW Local Union 353 and are sponsored by the Greater Toronto Electrical Contractors Association. Basically the Contractors have the work, and the IBEW has the workers. The JAC monitors all aspects of your apprenticeship.
I belong to another Union in another Province; how can I transfer to IBEW LU353?
At this point there is no reciprocal agreement between Provinces to transfer apprenticeship credits or hours. Please contact the IBEW LU353 at 416-510-3530 and/or the M.A.E.S.D. at 416-326-4734
Do I need a police check to apply?
No, but some of the work that our contractors do, in certain locations, require all workers on that site to be bonded. So no, you do not need one to apply, but it is likely you will be required to get one.
Can I be an apprentice part time?
No. Being a 309A Construction and Maintenance Electrical Apprentice is a full time career.
I finished one/two years of Trade School as an Electrician, does that put me at the front of the line for J.A.C applications?
No. The J.A.C does not require trade experience when individuals are applying.
I am in another Red Seal Trade; can I have my credit hours transferred over?
No. Your credit hours are not transferable from one apprenticeship to another as the required skill sets and knowledge are different.
I have completed about half of my Apprenticeship in another province (or country) can my hours be transferred over?
No. At this time there is no mechanism within the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skill Development to allow that to take place. You would be starting at ‘0’.
What is 40%, 50%, 60%, 70% or 80% of a Journeypersons wages?
Please contact the IBEW Local Union 353 for more information. Their number is 416-510-3530.
I was thinking of taking a Pre-Trade Program at a Community College. Will that move me to the front of the line?
Education never hurts anyone; it only made you more valuable because you have more knowledge. That being said, Apprenticeship in Ontario is designed so that 80% of your learning is done on the job while you are being paid to learn. So in the same way that a College Diploma or University Degree in an unrelated field demonstrates that you have taken part in higher learning and are more knowledgeable, it is not a requirement for applying.
Can I walk in to the JAC Offices and submit an application today?
No. Applications are only accepted during the Intake process, at the designated location at the specified times..
How long does the Program take?
All JAC apprentices must successfully complete an 1,800 hour Pre-apprenticeship Program. After that you will then become a Registered Apprentice in the 309A Construction and Maintenance Electrician sector with the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development. Apprenticeships are 9000 hours which usually take between five (5) and six (6) years to complete.
My father, mother, brother, sister, cousin, uncle or best friend is an apprentice with J.A.C., would they be able to refer me in?
No. We do not accept referrals. Everyone applies during the Intake process.
Where can I obtain missing credits?
Please contact your local school board or Adult Education Centre:
Toronto District School Board: (416) 397-3000
Continuing Education: (416) 338-4000
York Region District School Board: (905) 727-3141
Continuing Education: 1-877-280-8180
Peel District School Board: (905) 890-1099
Continuing Education: 1-866-275-1536 ext. 410
Durham District School Board: (905) 666-5500
Continuing Education: (905) 436-3211
ACE Distance Learning