Skip to main content

WVU Jackson’s Mill partners with painters union to provide apprentice training

Photo of Mount Vernon Dining Hall at WVU Jackson's Mill

Morgantown, W.Va. – A new partnership has formed between West Virginia University’s Jackson’s Mill, the Finishing Trades Institute of West Virginia located in Weston and the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 53 to use the Jackson’s Mill facility as an additional training ground for painting apprentices this summer.

While the partnership centers around renovation work and paint on the surface — it’s more than that.

“This is a true partnership that can help apprentices get real-world experience and simultaneously improve the facilities at WVU Jackson’s Mill for everyone to enjoy — it’s a win for the union, WVU Jackson’s Mill and the thousands of visitors that use the Mill every year,” said Sam White, Ph.D., WVU Extension Service professor in the Institute for Labor Studies and Research.

Union apprentices started work on Wednesday, March 7 by taking metal gates from around Jackson’s Lodge to be sandblasted and repainted. Then, in May, actual work on Jackson Lodge will start and continue through September.

The union will clean, stain, glaze windows, paint signs, railing and light posts with a crew of 40 apprentices and three instructors to oversee them.

When asked about the partnership, the union’s Director of Training at the Finishing Trades Institute of West Virginia, Tony Phillips, said that it was a great opportunity for apprentices.

“We pride ourselves on providing first-class, hands-on training within the industry and this partnership provides an opportunity to showcase the education, training and qualifications of the men and women who will complete this work,” said Phillips. “There’s a variety of work to be done that will let our apprentices acquire an array of skills on their way to a successful career.”

Business Manager and Secretary/Treasurer of the union’s district council, Daniel Poling, added that giving back to the community is important and beneficial to everyone in the partnership.

The WVU Extension Service provides educational opportunities to local communities through offices in all 55 West Virginia counties. WVU Extension Service’s programs are accomplished in partnership with individuals, families, businesses, civic groups and governmental organizations statewide and throughout the nation.

To learn more about WVU Extension programs, visit, or contact your local office of the WVU Extension Service. For the latest in news from the WVU Extension Service, follow @WVUExtension on Facebook and Twitter.