Here in the US, where jewelers do not follow a formal program
defining apprenticeship, what is the “graduation” to the next step?
What should the next step be called? Please help me find the right
Traditionally it was “apprentice” to age 21. “Journeyman” after that
if you worked for wages and “master” if you had your own shop. In my
situation there are two women in their late 20s who have each been
working for me full time for 4 years. I feel it is time to recognize
that they no longer beginners, but “journeymen” is a bit of a gender
mismatch for girls.
This is really all about marketing and employee moral and
motivation. For my customers, telling them that a mere apprentice
will be working on their job sounds like they are being foisted off
on a lesser craftsman. I want my customers to be reassured that their
work is being done by someone experienced and accomplished. I also
want to publicize their advancement and milk it for whatever free
publicity I can get from the local newspapers and on FaceBook. As far
as motivation goes, I think the pride and recognition that the
apprenticeship has been successful is a good thing and it emphasizes
that now that they are a full-fledged professionals the quality of
work needs to always reflect that. As a goal, it also serves as a
good incentive and motivation for the next apprentices.
I am planning an exhibition of the apprentices work next month that
will celebrate and publicize their promotion. I could use any help I
can get with appropriate language to describe this. I am struggling
for two terms. One that will describe their new status and another
word or phrase for the event when they graduate.