GENERAL CONTRACTOR CERTIFICATION
General Contractor Certification $5,200 per building season Available May-Oct
Estimated time: 2 building seasons from May to Oct each. Or 9 months straight if available
Scholarships: If the participant qualifies for a scholarship then they will only need to pay $1200 per building season. The remainder of the tuition will come from scholarships paid by clients who hire the Natural Living School to build them natural structures. Because this is a large investment to the homeowner, the participant will need to be approved by the school, and the people hiring the school to manage the construction of the dwelling. The participants will need to fill out a scholarship application and provide a letter to the sponsor explaining why they are worth the scholarship. This program is highly competitive, and the Natural Living School can only accept participants into the Foreman program if there are people willing to pay for the participant’s scholarship. If there is no scholarships available, the applicant has the choice to pay for the tuition in full prior to the start of the program, or try to raise the funds other ways, such as crowd funding. The participant will need to raise the funds prior to the start of their program.
Prerequisites: Participants applying for the General Contractor Certification must of completed our Foreman Certification program, or a similar natural building foreman program. The applicant will need to pass a comprehensive test and provide references if the Foreman program was completed somewhere else. If the applicant completed a similar program somewhere else they will need to have received similar experience in the skill set mentioned in our Foreman program. If they have not completed these skill sets, or fail the comprehensive test, they will be required to complete our journeyman program. This may be done in a shorter time frame, depending on the applicant, and their skill level. The minimum will be 12 months.
Description: After the Foreman Certification is complete, and the participants has been accepted into the General Contractor Certification, the student will continue as a Foreman for the next 12 months, fulfilling those duties, while working directly under a General Contractor learning the trade. They will learn all the responsibilities for running a project from beginning to end under the direct supervision of the General Contractor and the Master Builder. The participant in this program will need to continue to master all the trades. They will work directly with the foundation crew, the carpenters, the plumber, the electrician, the plaster crew, the roofers, and the Master Builder. They will continue to master the art of plastering and natural finishes. They will also be responsible for 3D and 2D plans for their project. They will learn to work with the client and estimate job expenses, as well as manage bills and payroll. They will learn to manage sub-contractors, and make sure all tradesmen are on schedule and on budget. They will have all the responsibilities of a Foreman, but work directly with the General Contractor.
After completing the 12 months as a Foreman, the participant will spend the next 12 months as a General Contractor in training. The participant will continue to work with all master tradesmen and continue to develop a greater understanding of each step needed to build a structure from beginning to end. They will have the opportunity to co-run a job with the Master Natural Builder, and be in charge of the completion of that job. The participants will need to master the skill of drawing and designing so that plans can be produced and used to submit to the county. They will need to understand how to run, manage, and develop a project from beginning to end. This includes all finishes. The participant will need to work with clients, to develop an estimate, and run a budget for the job. The participants will have a written test, an oral exam, and present complete plans for a project. They will also need to have completed two project from beginning to end.
Participants for the General Contractor’s Certification can choose to live on or off campus. If the participant is staying at the school, they will be sharing meals with the other participants, and share in the duties of cooking and cleaning.
If the participant for the General Contractor’s Certification is choosing to stay at the school, they will need to agree and follow all the term and conditions outlined below. If the participant is choosing to live off campus then they will need to agree to the terms and conditions outlined below, during work days, including evening classes and during weekend projects. If participants chooses to live off campus, the tuition will be $2400, and they will need to bring their own lunch.
Other Prerequisites: 18 years of age, in good health, with health insurance. Have the funds to pay for the full Journeyman Certification, plus have extra spending money. Be able to pass a drug test. Be willing to refrain from drug use and drink alcohol while in the program, including after work and on weekends.
Disposition: The participants interested in joining the school should be people who are spiritual, love yoga and meditation, have high energy, love to work hard, be able to stay upbeat, happy, and energetic during long work days. They should be organized and willing to go the extra mile with a smile. Students should be able to get up early and work late. They need to be the kind of person who can follow instruction and are willing to think outside the box. Ideal applicants are early to work, return back to work on time after breaks, do not mind staying late to get the job done, and are willing to start early to prepare for the day. The student should be the kind of person who doesn’t need drugs or alcohol to relax. A person who is flexible with scheduling and able to adapt in a moment’s notice, happily. Able to let things roll off their back if plans change. Overall, a happy, healthy, person with a good attitude, that is a team player.
Do Not Apply: In our past, we have experienced all kinds of people and situations, most of them very positive, but a few not so positive. We decided to put together a list of the not so positive attributes that really changed the energy of the group, and affected all of us. By no means is this list to scare you away from the program. We know there is a little of these attributes in all of us. Really, we just want to attract people with the positive disposition mentioned above. So please do not apply if you are not a morning person. If “low energy,” is part of your life. If you have any health issues or injuries, that would keep you from doing hard manual labor. If you don’t consider yourself a positive, energetic, happy person, don’t apply. If you smoke pot, or need to drink alcohol to relax after work or during the weekends, do not apply. Do not come to our program to quit a substance, or to change your habits. If you are having a life changing crisis, or going through a difficult time in life, do not apply. Do not come to our program if you don’t like to be told what to do, or have trouble following orders. If you are not a team player, if you are not organized, if you are late consistently, if self worth is an issue, if you do not have funds saved up to pay the $1,200 for the program plus savings for spending money, do not apply. If changing plans drives you crazy, if you have a hard time being spontaneous, if you need thing to go your way, and you get frustrated if it doesn’t, do not apply.
Terms of agreement:
Sample of daily and weekly check list: The Daily Check List will be completed by the general contractor at the end of every work day. Then it will be reviewed by the Director of the School every week. The director will fill out the Weekly check list for every participant based on feedback from the staff and teacher. If the participant receives 3 negative overall reviews in one week, it will count as a failed week. If there are three failed weeks, then the participant fails the terms of agreement, and will be asked to leave the program.
Daily Review Checklist
Date: _______________________ Name:___________________________________
1. On time to work: Y N Hours worked: ____________________________
2. On time back from break: Y N
3. Worked with good attitude : Y N
4. Distracted: Y N
Why:_____Phone_____Talking with others without working
_____To much time DJ-ing radio_____Other:________________________
5. Stayed on task, and finished set goal for the day:YN
6. Task completed: ______________________________________________________________
Overall Review: _________Positive _________Negative
(Any “No” on #1 – #3 = Negative review, a “Yes” on #4 = Negative review): Three Overall Negative reviews in one week = Failed Week. Three failed weeks = expulsion from the program
Weekly Review Checklist
1. Is the participant going to at least 2 yoga/med classes per week. Y N
2. Does the participant have a good attitude and high energy Y N
3. Is the participant organized and willing to work hard Y N
4. Has the participant been able to follow the no drugs/alcohol policy Y N
5. Is the participant communicating if they are not showing up to work Y N
6. Has the participant gone to all classes. Y N
7. Did the participant receive 3 or more positive reviews for the week Y N
(No on #7 is automatic fail for the week)
* Three “No” answers = one failed week. Three failed weeks = expulsion