Becoming a Plumber in Mississippi
If you’ve been looking for a career where you can work with your hands, have ongoing opportunities and make a decent living wage, a career in plumbing might be a good option for you. Since plumbing is such a vital infrastructure, it exists in nearly every place that humans inhabit. When it comes down to it, it’s hard to deny that plumbers are essential to the fabric of society.
So, what is it like to work as a plumber? Plumbers need to inspect, install, maintain and repair piping systems to ensure proper functioning. These tasks can be as simple as dealing with household leaks and blockages or, in the case of a pipefitter or steamfitter, dealing with pressurized or specialized piping systems.
The work of a plumber involves a lot of physical stamina, as plumbers often need to work in tight spaces like crawlspaces and behind walls. A great deal of knowledge about safe materials and building codes will be essential, as the plumber will have a constant responsibility to ensure safety to the end-user and general public.
Plumbers will also need to have the ability to communicate with clients and other contractors to keep a project running smoothly. Those who are interested in business ownership will want to acquire basic business skills like marketing and accounting. Plumbers are also involved with preparing written estimates for clients and bidding on projects and will need the knowledge to do so as accurately as possible.
Plumbing Licensing in Mississippi
Plumbers in Mississippi need to hold a state contractor’s license in order to work in the state. The license is issued by the Mississippi State Board of Contractors and can be acquired by completing an examination. All license applicants will be required to show proof of general liability insurance.
Plumbing Training in Mississippi
Plumbers generally train in one of two ways: through an apprenticeship or a training course. Apprenticeships can be found by searching this website for openings in your area.
Training programs in Mississippi include:
- Hinds Community College in Raymond offers a Plumbing and Construction course. The program prepares students with the skills they need to begin working in the construction and plumbing field. Graduates are qualified to take a licensing exam.
- Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College with campuses in Jackson County, Harrison County, Perkinston and George County offers a no-cost Workforce Training Program in Pipefitting.
Plumbing Apprenticeships in Mississippi
A career as a plumber is a beneficial one. It is a well-paying job, and plumbers will always be needed. Each state sets its own regulations for becoming a plumber, with most states requiring a certain number of apprenticeship hours before you can take the exam to become licensed. In the state of Mississippi, however, it is not mandatory that you work as an apprentice before obtaining your plumber’s license through the Mississippi State Board of Contractors (MSBOC).
That said, plumbers in Mississippi can learn their trade through apprenticeship. As an aspiring plumber, there is a lot to learn about pipe inspection, installation, and maintenance as well as building codes and safety ordinances. Enrolling in an apprenticeship program can be a great stepping stone for your career. You can find apprenticeships through local plumbing and pipefitting unions and non-union programs. There are also state-sponsored apprenticeship programs, and training is offered at community and technical colleges.
You may wish to apply for an apprenticeship through the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation (MCEF), which is a non-union sponsored program in Mississippi. The MCEF is located in Pearl and offers various apprenticeship programs in the construction trade. You must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma or GED to apply. Hinds Community College in Raymond also has a plumbing training program, and graduates can take the journey workers exam. If you are interested in a union-sponsored program, you can visit the United Association website here and look for union programs in your area.
Certifications are not a requirement for most plumbers, but if you wish to provide a specialized service or apply for specific positions, they might be worth considering. A few of the possible certifications you could apply for include Commercial Plumbing Inspector, IAPMO Plumbing Plans Inspector and Green Plumbing Design.
Wages and Growth in Mississippi
Wages in Mississippi are below the national average for this career field, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reporting an average annual plumber’s salary of $46,610 in 2019. However, it should be noted that wages need to be taken in context with the cost of living, which can vary from state to state.
Plumbing as a career is expected to see growth over the next 10 years, with Projections Central predicting a 4.1 percent increase in jobs.
Plumbing Opportunities in Mississippi
Plumbers find jobs in all types of industries, with the BLS reporting that the most common jobs for plumbers are with building equipment contractors and utility system construction. Self-employment is also an option for those who wish to work independently or even grow a lucrative business. A few of the possible employers in Mississippi include the City of Jackson, TradeSource, Jackson Public Schools, University of Mississippi and Lowe’s Companies, Inc.