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The Best Guide on The Masonry Worker Occupation (Updated 2021)

Interested in a career as a masonry worker? Get an overview into how to become a mason, what pay to expect and what makes a great masonry professional.
2019 Median Pay$46,500 per year 
$22.35 per hour
Typical Entry-Level EducationHighschool Diploma
Number of Jobs, 2019302,100
Masonry pro occupation overview.

What Masonry Workers Do

Masons use bricks, concrete and concrete blocks, and natural and man-made stones to build structures.

Masonry worker laying bricks on mortar.
Mason laying bricks on wet mortar.

Work Environment

Masonry work is physically demanding, requiring heavy lifting and long periods of standing, kneeling, and bending. Most masons work full time.

How to Become a Mason

Masons typically need a high school diploma or equivalent and learn the trade either through an apprenticeship or on the job.

Pay

The median annual wage for masonry professionals was $46,500 in May 2019.

Job Outlook

Employment of masonry pros is projected to decline 3 percent from 2019 to 2029.

State & Area Data

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for masonry professionals.

How to become a masonry pro

Masons typically need a high school diploma or equivalent and learn the trade either through an apprenticeship or on the job.

Education

A high school diploma or equivalent is typically required to enter the occupation.

Many technical schools offer programs in masonry. These programs operate both independently and in conjunction with apprenticeship training.

Training

Masons typically learn the trade through apprenticeships and on the job, working with experienced masons.

Several groups, including unions and contractor associations, sponsor apprenticeship programs. Apprentices learn construction basics, such as blueprint reading; mathematics for measurement; building code requirements; and safety and first-aid practices. After completing an apprenticeship program, masons are considered journey workers and are able to do tasks on their own.

The Home Builders Institute and the International Masonry Institute offer pre-apprenticeship training programs for eight construction trades, including masonry.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

The majority of masons start out as construction laborers and helpers before becoming professional masons.

Advancement

After becoming a journey worker, masonry workers may find opportunities to advance to supervisor, superintendent, or other construction management positions. Experienced masonry workers may choose to become independent contractors. Masonry workers in a union may also find opportunities for advancement within their union.

Important traits for masonry workers

Not scared of heights – Masonry workers often use scaffolding, so they should be comfortable working at heights.

Vivid color vision -Masonry workers need to be able to distinguish between small variations in color when setting terrazzo patterns in order to produce the best looking finish.

Dexterity – Masonry workers must be able to place bricks, stones, and other materials with precision.

Hand–eye coordination – Masonry workers need to apply smooth, even layers of mortar; set bricks; and remove any excess before the mortar hardens.

Physical stamina – Masonry workers must keep up a steady pace while setting bricks, and the constant lifting can be tiring.

Physical strength – Masonry workers should be able to lift more than 50 pounds, repeatedly. They carry heavy tools, equipment, and other materials, such as bags of mortar and grout.

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