Enhancing Workforce Leadership

ApprenticeshipUSA and WIOA: Increasing Opportunities for U.S. Workers

Posted by Eric Seleznow - On October 06, 2015 (EST)

ApprenticeshipUSA represents opportunity for U.S. workers in the 21st century.  The opportunity to enter a pathway to a great career!  Today, there are Apprenticeship programs in more than 1,000 occupations, including health care, energy, information technology, transportation, advanced manufacturing, and construction.  Over 150,000 businesses nationwide have integrated the apprenticeship model into their talent development strategy.  And WIOA now positions apprenticeship at the center of its suite of integrated workforce strategies. 

Apprenticeship provides the workforce system a proven strategy to train U.S. workers and the opportunity to deepen its relationship with key industry sectors.  The “earn and learn” model has great appeal for both business and its workforce.  The use of apprenticeship as a sector strategy will strengthen regional economies and provide a clear path to success for workers, from youth finding their first job to adults transitioning to new careers.

In Detroit, Michigan, Apprenticeship is being integrated into a regional strategy that strengthens the economy and increases access to career training for under-represented populations.  The city of Detroit, the Detroit workforce agency, the state workforce agency, and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship are partnering together to provide Detroit workers with a range of promising career opportunities.  Through this innovative partnership, disadvantaged workers are receiving customized readiness training, a stipend, assessment services, and employment pre-screening and placement in a variety of apprenticeships, such as landscaping, culinary, construction, or pharmacy tech.

WIOA specifies that a representative from an apprenticeship program serve on state and local workforce boards.  Other WIOA provisions have also strengthened the relationship between apprenticeship and the workforce system.  Here are some other ways WIOA increases access to this effective training model and encourages public workforce system professionals to embrace it as a successful training solution:

 -           Add Registered Apprenticeship programs to your approved training provider list.  By directly connecting training to jobs through apprenticeship, you create more options for workers and more opportunities to build relationships with employers in key industries.

-           Connect your business services staff with representatives from Registered Apprenticeship programs – they can be a valuable resource for helping companies develop talent.

-           Include apprenticeship in your career pathway presentations to youth.  Include success stories from local businesses as a way to help youth visualize getting paid to learn a new trade.

-           Workforce Boards can take the lead or work with partners to organize area employers to develop a local registered apprenticeship program

 Don’t forget that apprenticeship counts as a job from day one, so be sure your staff understands the positive impact apprenticeship can have on your performance.

 Interested in learning more? Visit the ApprenticeshipUSA Toolkit at www.dol.gov/apprenticeship/toolkit.htm.

-           Online training on how apprenticeship works and fits into your WIOA strategy

-           Tools on funding apprenticeship and counting outcomes under WIOA

-           A guide for business services staff who want to integrate apprenticeship into industry strategies

-           Success stories from around the nation

-           And much more

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Modified On : October 06, 2015
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