Click to search the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library Skip Navigation

Job Search Central

Free Job Training in Woodworking


Are you an unemployed or underemployed New Yorker who has some experience or skill working with your hands? Do you have a desire for a career in a wood-related trade? If so, attend an orientation to get more information and to apply.

Inlaid mahogany break-front bookcase. Designed by Thomas Sheraton for "The times" newspaper, and now the property of "The times" book club. Mahogany pedestal centre table. From the "cabinetmaker's drawing book" published 1791-94. Mahogany high-case clock, late eighteenth century., Digital ID 1642902, New York Public LibraryBrooklyn Woods is a program of Brooklyn Workforce Innovations (BWI) which helps low-income New Yorkers establish careers in different job sectors which include voice and data telecommunications cable installation, woodworking and cabinetmaking, TV and film production and commercial driving.

Brooklyn Woods trains individuals in the basics of woodworking, preparing them for entry-level jobs in woodwork and related fields. Upon successful completion of the program job placement assistance is provided.

This free 7-week, full time training course (Mon-Fri From 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) includes instructions in:

  • The proper use of hand tools, power tools and woodworking machinery
  • An introduction to finishing and sanding, veneering, wood identification, and read shop drawings
  • How to cut, machine, sand and assemble a cabinet
  • Shop math and measurement
  • Comprehensive safety training including a 10-hour OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) course
  • Soft skills training to aid in getting and keeping employment
  • Job placement assistance (for successful graduates)

To be Eligible Applicants MUST:

  • Have minimal or some experience working with wood or as a laborer, as a carpenter's helper, in a trade or working with your hands.
  • Have a strong interest in working in woodworking or a related field as a career
  • Be unemployed or underemployed
  • Be able to attend class Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for 7 weeks
  • Be 21 years or older
  • Resident of NYC; Eligible to work in the U.S.
  • Be physically fit/able to lift 70 lbs.
  • Pass an 8th grade reading test and 6th grade math test

Individuals receiving food stamps and/or with criminal justice issues are highly encouraged to apply.

Next cycle free job training in woodworking will begin in late March 2013. The next two orientations are on Wednesday, March 13th at 10 a.m. and Wednesday, March 20th at 10 a.m.

Call 718-389-3636 to confirm but you do not need to RSVP or pre-register.

Brooklyn Woods free job training in woodworking runs 5 cycles per year. Orientations are held every Wednesday at 10 a.m. for future cycles.

Please bring Photo ID and be prepared to spend about 3 hours at the facility. You will fill out an application, receive detailed information about the program, tour the state-of-the art workshop, and complete reading, math and measurement tests.

Location: 125 8th Street (Between 2nd and 3rd Avenue) in Brooklyn.

Subway: Take R Train to 9th Street or F/G Trains to 4th Avenue. Walk north on 4th Avenue to 8th Street and make a left. Walk down 8th Street, cross 3rd Avenue and continue until you see a gray metal door marked125. Ring the buzzer for Brooklyn Woods which is located on the 2nd floor.

Car drivers: please note that street parking is extremely difficult to find on 8th Street and the surrounding blocks.

For information, please contact Toby Gardner, Program Coordinator 718-389-3636 X12 or email

Please note that according to the Employment Projections 2010-2020 of the Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is a projected rapid job growth for carpenters.  Helpers and carpenters are also listed as the Fastest Growing Occuaptions.

You can learn more about woodworkers from the Occupational Outlook Handbook 2012-2013:

The following are important qualities for woodworkers from the Occupational Outlook Handbook.

  • Detail oriented. Woodworkers must pay attention to details to be certain that the products meet specifications and to keep themselves safe.
  • Dexterity. Woodworkers must make precise cuts with a variety of saws, so they need a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination.
  • Math skills. Knowledge of basic math and computer skills are important, particularly for those who work in manufacturing, where technology continues to advance. Woodworkers need to understand geometry to visualize how the wood pieces will fit together to make a 3-dimensional object, such as a cabinet or a piece of furniture.
  • Mechanical skills. Modern technology systems require woodworkers be able to use programmable devices, computers, and robots on the factory floor.
  • Physical strength. Woodworkers must be strong enough to lift bulky and heavy sheets of wood, such as plywood.
  • Stamina. The ability to endure long periods of standing and repetitious movements is crucial for woodworkers, as they often stand for extended periods when manufacturing parts and products.
  • Technical skills. Woodworkers must be able to understand blueprints and technical manuals for a range of products and machines.
  • Troubleshooting skills. To avoid unnecessary and costly waste, woodworkers must recognize mistakes during the manufacturing or finishing process.

You can also learn about carpenters from the Occupational Outlook Handbook 2012-2013.

For more information on woodworking or other kinds of occupations please visit Job Search Central at 188 Madison Avenue and 34th Street.


Patron-generated content represents the views and interpretations of the patron, not necessarily those of The New York Public Library. For more information see NYPL's Website Terms and Conditions.

Post new comment