Career as Bricklayer Provides for Family of Seven

By: Amanda Pedersen

One of Sean Robinson’s favorite past-times is playing with his five children. They read, play basketball, and are genuinely excited to spend time together.

A resident of Golden Valley, Minnesota, a suburb in the Twin Cities, Robinson, 39, has found a career to provide for his five children.

After Robinson graduated from high school, he worked odd jobs trying to make ends meet.

Eventually, he wanted a career with great pay and benefits to support himself and his family.

His first step was attending North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, where he discovered the career of bricklaying during a class field trip to the BAC Local 1 Minnesota/North Dakota/South Dakota.

“I went on the field trip and was exposed to laying brick and decided to give the profession a try,” Robinson said. “The pay and benefits that bricklayers receive was appealing. It was a lot more than what I was making at the time.”

After the field trip, Robinson applied for a bricklaying apprenticeship and was accepted into the union.

Introduction to Life Through Bricklaying Apprenticeship

Bricklayers construct walls, partitions, steps, free-standing piers, arches and other structures made of brick. concrete block or other masonry materials. They are knowledgeable about the different types of bricks available, the correct mortar mixtures and how to adapt building methods to different weather conditions.

Robinson’s apprenticeship through the BAC Local 1 Minnesota/North Dakota/South Dakota is a five-year program where he works a 40-hour week under the guidance of experienced professionals.

“When you first start, you will have difficult days,” said Robinson. “But, over time with the instruction of the journey workers around you, you become better. I’m surprised how much I’ve learned in just three years.”


Sean built his career. It’s time to build yours. Watch Sean Robinson describe his construction experience.

Robinson attends night class every other week at the BAC training center where he learns about new bricklaying techniques and materials he can use on the job site.

“The skills that you learn at the BAC training center through your apprenticeship are extremely useful on the job site,” Robinson said. ” You know when other people on the job have not gone through apprenticeship training, it’s a standard respected by all workers in the union.”

Being an apprentice through a union also provides benefits such as healthcare and a retirement pension.

“The wages and benefits allow for myself and my family to live a comfortable life,” Robinson said. “That is something that I was not able to say prior to my apprenticeship as a bricklayer.”

Interested in an Apprenticeship as a Bricklayer

“My favorite part of my job is completing something I didn’t think was possible when I walked onto a job site,” said Robinson. “It’s a very rewarding feeling when you look up at a building and knowing that you helped to make it possible.”

Interested in a rewarding career as a bricklayer? Check out https://constructioncareers.org/apprenticeship/.