The Apprentice Beekeeper is the first level of certification in the Oregon Master Beekeeper Program. This level is designed to give those just starting in beekeeping solid information and support, with the goal of increasing retention of new beekeepers as they develop confidence in their ability to keep bees. The training, experience, and guidance provided at the Apprentice Beekeeper level provide the student with:
The knowledge and confidence to keep bees in Langstroth hives
Hands-on experience working with bees, including use of tools and equipment
Information about the costs and "how-to's" of obtaining bees to get started as a beekeeper
Opportunities for training and mentorship
Exposure to resources to improve skills and stay current in beekeeping
Which tier of the Apprentice Program is right for you?
Our Apprentice program is separated into three tiers - placement is determined by your level of experience when you enter the program. Please view our 'Apprentice Program Certification Requirements' chart linked below for a detailed description of program requirements for each tier.
'Getting Started' Apprentice Program ($100 fee first year/$100 second year)
Zero to 1 year of experience
No hive required - no assigned mentor
Upon completion of requirements by June 30th of their enrollment year, the student is eligible to move to the Traditional Apprentice Program the following year
All applicants accepted
Traditional Apprentice Program ($200 fee)
1 or more years experience
Hive access required - mentor assigned
Acceptance based on availability of volunteer mentors
If you are interested in our program, the first step is to put your name on the Apprentice Waiting List. Each year in late summer we send applications to everyone who is on the list prior to June 30th. Once applications are received, we assign people a spot in the program based on their experience level and the availability of mentors in their area. Program fees are collected, and the registration is finalized. Classes begin in January of each year. You must be 18 years or older to enroll. Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions (https://extension.oregonstate.edu/mb/frequently-asked-questions) page for more information.
Apprentice and 'Getting Started' Program Waiting List
Interested in becoming an apprentice student? Please put your name on our waiting list. The enrollment process for the following year begins in late summer, when notices to complete an application are emailed to those on the waiting list.
The waiting list remains open through June 30th of each year. Thank you!
If you have five or more years beekeeping experience, your knowledge may qualify you to start the Oregon Master Beekeeper program at the Journey level.
Please review participation and certification requirements before applying (linked above). To initiate the challenge process, please complete the online application and be prepared with your payment (contact Jen Holt (https://extension.oregonstate.edu/people/jennifer-holt) for the payment link). When we receive your application and payment, we will notify you so that you may begin the challenge process.