Labor Department Announces Availability of $50.5M for Apprenticeship Opportunities

Words: Dan Kamys
June 23, 2016 —  Registered apprenticeship programs provide pathways for American workers from all backgrounds to acquire the skills and knowledge needed for good-paying jobs in fields such as information technology, healthcare and building trades. Through a new U.S. Department of Labor grant competition announced today, states have the opportunity to expand those programs. ApprenticeshipUSA State Expansion Grants, ranging from $700,000 to $3.2M each, are designed to help states integrate apprenticeship into their education and workforce systems, as well as engage industry and other partners to expand apprenticeship to new sectors and populations. With these grants, states will also be able to better conduct outreach and work with employers to start new programs, and expand opportunities for groups typically under-represented in registered apprenticeships (e.g., at-risk youth, women, and individuals with disabilities). The department will award approximately 33 grants totaling $50.5 million. Research shows that more than 87 percent of apprentices retain their jobs after completing their programs, with an average starting wage above $50,000 per year. Also, studies from around the world report that for every dollar spent on apprenticeship, employers get an average of $1.47 back in increased productivity, reduced waste and greater front-line innovation. The ApprenticeshipUSA State Expansion Grants are the second phase of the department’s $90 million funding strategy announced in April to grow and diversify registered apprenticeship. Information about how to apply is available at www.grants.gov. Grant applications must be received by Sept. 7, 2016.
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