Pre-Apprenticeship Program


The Philadelphia Housing Authority's reformed Pre-Apprenticeship Program offers residents comprehensive training in maintenance and repairs and the opportunity to start a rewarding career with PHA.

Participants will learn the skills needed to become laborers, painters, and maintenance mechanics from qualified union instructors. Students will also have access to state-of-the-art training facilities. Graduates will become PHA employees.

PHA is partnering with three unions to make the program a success-Laborers Local 332, the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades/District Council 21, and Maintenance Mechanics Local 32BJ.


Our mission is to ensure residents have the opportunity to learn important skills and build a career so they can work towards self-sufficiency. The new, outcome-driven Pre-Apprenticeship emphasizes improved job training, job placement, and job retention.


Pre-Training: Students participate in a free 8-week education boot camp for math and literacy, communications and leadership training, and a course in environmentally-friendly maintenance practices, while receiving compensation of $7.25/hour.

Specific Tracks: After pre-training, participants will enter one of three tracks:

  • Laborers - training on equipment use and bed bug remediation.
  • Painters -  training in painting, drywall installation, and plastering.
  • Maintenance Mechanics - extensive training in carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work.

Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for the Pre-Apprenticeship Program, you must:

  • be at least 18 years old
  • be a current PHA resident as verified by a current lease (conventional sites, scattered sites, PAPMC, HCV)
  • be physically able to lift heavy items
  • have a positive attitude
  • pass a drug test and background screening prior to admission
  • have a state-issued ID, birth certificate, high school diploma/GED, and Social Security card

Job Placement

PHA is committed to having residents make up 25 percent of the agency's workforce. The Pre-Apprenticeship Program is the first step to making that a reality.

Our comprehensive case management services are designed to help participants overcome any barriers to achieving their goals.

Upon successful completion of the program, Pre-Apprentice graduates may become eligible for either internal employment opportunities with PHA, or external employment opportunities with other organizations.

PHA Apprenticeship opportunities last for three years for maintenance mechanics, and two years for laborers and painters. Participants may also take exams to become members of their respective unions and receive continued training during their apprenticeships.

The Resident Programs Intake Coordinator
Community Operations and Resident Development
2013 Ridge Ave, 2nd Floor,
Philadelphia, PA 19121
Office Number: (215) 684-5309
Direct Number: (215) 684-4373