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Career and Education Opportunities for Painters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Painter career and educational opportunities abound in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. There are currently 6,810 jobs for painters in Wisconsin and this is projected to grow 12% to 7,610 jobs by 2016. This is better than the national trend for painters, which sees this job pool growing by about 7.0% over the next eight years. Painters generally paint walls, equipment, and other structural surfaces, using brushes, rollers, and spray guns.

A person working as a painter can expect to earn about $17 per hour or $36,080 annually on average in Wisconsin and about $15 per hour or $32,960 annually on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for painters are better than in the overall category of Painting and Finishing Work in Wisconsin, and not quite as good as the overall Painting and Finishing Work category nationally.

The Milwaukee area is home to thirty-nine schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of Milwaukee where you can get a degree as a painter. Given that the most common education level for painters is less than a high school diploma, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a painter if you already have a high school diploma.


Painter video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, painters paint walls, equipment, and other structural surfaces, using brushes, rollers, and spray guns. They also may remove old paint to prepare surface prior to painting.

Painters smooth surfaces, using sandpaper, scrapers, brushes, steel wool, and/or sanding machines. They also read work orders or receive instructions from supervisors or homeowners in order to establish work requirements. Equally important, painters have to apply primers or sealers to ready new surfaces. They are often called upon to clear away fixtures such as pictures and electric switch covers before painting. They are expected to apply paint and other finishes to equipment and/or other structures, using brushes or rollers. Finally, painters erect scaffolding and swing gates, or prepare ladders, to work above ground level.

Every day, painters are expected to be able to control objects and devices with precise control. They need to use lower back and abdominal strength.

It is important for painters to calculate amounts of required materials and estimate costs, on the basis of surface measurements and/or work orders. They are often called upon to mix and match colors of paint or varnish with oil and thinning and drying additives so as to obtain desired colors and consistencies. They also bake finishes on painted and enameled articles, using baking ovens. They are sometimes expected to decide on and purchase tools and finishes for surfaces to be covered, considering durability, ease of handling, methods of application, and customers' wishes. Somewhat less frequently, painters are also expected to trim stencils, and brush and spray lettering and decorations on surfaces.

They also have to be able to trim stencils, and brush and spray lettering and decorations on surfaces And finally, they sometimes have to smooth surfaces, using sandpaper, scrapers, brushes, steel wool, and/or sanding machines.

Like many other jobs, painters must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Milwaukee include:

  • Brick and Block Mason. Lay and bind building materials, such as brick, structural tile, and terra-cotta block, with mortar and other substances to construct or repair walls, partitions, and other structures.
  • Paperhanger. Cover interior walls and ceilings of rooms with decorative wallpaper or fabric, or attach advertising posters on surfaces, such as walls and billboards. Duties include removing old materials from surface to be papered.
  • Tile Setter. Apply hard tile, marble, and wood tile to walls, floors, and roof decks.


Milwaukee Area Technical College - Milwaukee, WI

Milwaukee Area Technical College, 700 W State St, Milwaukee, WI 53233-1443. Milwaukee Area Technical College is a large college located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 18,780 students and an admission rate of 54%. Milwaukee Area Technical College has a less than one year program in Painting/Painter and Wall Coverer which graduated fourteen students in 2008.

Gateway Technical College - Kenosha, WI

Gateway Technical College, 3520 30th Ave, Kenosha, WI 53144-1690. Gateway Technical College is a medium sized college located in Kenosha, Wisconsin. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,587 students. Gateway Technical College has a one to two year program in Painting/Painter and Wall Coverer which graduated one student in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Milwaukee, Wisconsin photo by Towpilot

Milwaukee is located in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. It has a population of over 604,477, which has grown by 1.3% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Milwaukee, 87, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Milwaukee cost $167,400 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, ninety-six new homes were built in Milwaukee, down from one hundred sixty-seven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Milwaukee are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is administrative and support and waste management services, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 18.3% of Milwaukee residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Milwaukee is 10.6%, which is greater than Wisconsin's average of 7.7%.

The percentage of Milwaukee residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 47.5%, is less than both the national and state average. Church of the Epiphany, Saint Mark African Methodist Episcopal Church and German Full Gospel Church are among the churches located in Milwaukee. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Milwaukee is home to the Caroline Hall and the Wood as well as Cannon Park and Fifth Ward Playground. Shopping malls in the area include Juneau Village Shopping Center, Times Square Shopping Center and Grand Avenue Mall Shopping Center. Visitors to Milwaukee can choose from Edge-O-Town Motel, Manor House Hotel and Days Inn West Allis for temporary stays in the area.