Home and commercial construction is a field to consider when looking into careers in manufacturing. After all, there is nothing more precious than a person's home and nothing more important, outside of family, than where he or she works. And these jobs are in manufacturing since you will use tools, machines or labor to produce something for sale or use.
One advantage of construction jobs is that the problem many people have when applying in a field, choosing what to specialize in, is often solved by a specific aptitude. If you don't know because you never really considered this field of work, you can take an aptitude test or investigate on-line to see if a particular job is more attractive to you. You can then train in school for a position or take helpers job, often with no schooling.
However, something you should know is that you could very well start at the bottom even after any schooling. Take it from a Navy guy. I went to school in the Navy and spent my first 8 months mopping floors. The new guy is the guy who takes out the trash in a restaurant.
As stated, another more practical way to investigate the field of construction without spending money on school is simply to apply at an entry level job that will both pay you and train you. Often these jobs are available because more experienced people don't want them or they want to start at the top where jobs aren't
Some of these jobs are, for instance a carpenter's helper. It may require you to hold tools for the carpenter, bring him tools up a ladder, clean up a work site and do laborious sanding he or she doesn't want to do. But it is a start, and as you learn, you move up to apprentice and then eventually qualify as a carpenter.
Another job is a mud carrier. This person carries the mortar used by masons on the job. It is in heavy 5 gallon buckets and you will carry it from where it is stored to the mason in the field, up ladders, etc. You also will clean up the work area and this may include picking up broken heavy cement blocks. It can be back breaking.
As stated, many construction jobs have openings in less qualified positions. Drywall jobs include people who tape drywall, finish it and, of course, clean up jobs sites.
With roofers it may involve job clean up as 10 % of a shingle on the job ends up wasted. Also, extra or forgotten equipment has to be brought to the roof. Here you will start at the bottom and work your way to the top in one day. The top of the roof that is. By the way, one reason so much of the job is clean up is not because these people are lazy. They don't want to do extra work on a job that keeps them from 1) better paying jobs 2) may be the extra strain that gets them hurt so they can not work or 3) Have spent years working hard and quite frankly have bodies that are worn out from hard labor and appreciate this kind of help.
There are jobs openings today that are entry level in construction, some paying union wages depending on the State. Plumbers helpers, electrician helper, roofers helper, etc.. If it is a construction job, usually put helper after it and that is where you can start with your job search.
Jeffrey Ruzicka is a retired executive with a small company that specializes in industrial water treatment. He lives happily with his wife in Western Pennsylvania and is a contributing writer to ManufacturingWorkersBlog, a Nexxt blog.