Career Path for the Trades

Have a desire to become a Plumber, Pipefitter or HVAC/R Technician? We know where you need to go.

Apprentice Training Centers

The MCAI partners with Plumbers & Steamfitters Local 33 and Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 125 to offer state-of-the-art apprentice training through training centers located in Des Moines and Cedar Rapids. Each apprentice must complete 5 years of trade-specific training before “turning out” as a journeyperson. Apprentices and journeypersons can also earn an Associate’s Degree of Applied Science in Apprenticeship Pipefitting. The three trades taught at the training centers are:


Today’s plumber needs the knowledge and skills that will enable him or her to work on projects that range from residential homes to large nuclear power plants. While their work still may include unclogging drains or installing fixtures, plumbers are called upon to do increasingly complex work.


Power plants, waste water and water treatment plants, office buildings, medical facilities, and factories all have complex high- and low-pressure piping systems that require highly trained pipefitters. Pipefitters/Steamfitters install, weld and repair all types of pipes and related materials like power piping, pneumatic piping, hydraulic piping, hot water and steam heating systems, refrigeration and air conditioning systems, and temperature control equipment.

HVAC/R Technician

Heating, ventilation, air-conditioning, and refrigeration (HVAC/R) technicians are the ones who install, maintain, and repair these systems that control the temperature, humidity and general air quality in the buildings in which we live, work, and play.