The US Department of Labor has announced the awarding of grants to 28 public-private apprenticeship partnerships totaling nearly $100 million through the Apprenticeship: Closing the Skills Gap grant program. These grants will support large-scale expansions of apprenticeship in industries including advanced manufacturing, healthcare and information technology.
President Donald J. Trump’s Executive Order on Expanding Apprenticeship in America called for increasing the number of apprentices in the US across all industries. There are more than 6.4 million job openings reported in the US, and expanding apprenticeships will help individuals gain the skills necessary to fill these vacancies.
“These grants will further the Administration’s efforts to expand apprenticeships. For Americans who want an alternative to the traditional bachelor’s degree, apprenticeships are a way to learn valuable skills that lead to good paying careers,” said US Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia. “Companies across the country tell me that their greatest challenge today is finding the skilled workers they need. This funding will bolster America’s competitiveness by adding more skilled workers to fill millions of open jobs today and in the future.”
Scalia made the announcement during a trip to North Carolina State University, one of the grantees.
The Apprenticeship: Closing the Skills Gap grant program will support the training of more than 92,000 individuals in new or expanded apprenticeship programs for a range of employers, including small and medium-sized businesses, veterans, military spouses, service members re-entering the civilian workforce and groups underrepresented in current apprenticeship programs, including women and Americans reentering the workforce from the justice system.
The grant program supports apprenticeships that include a paid, work-based learning component and a required educational or instructional component that results in the issuance of an industry-recognized credential; and which meet appropriate quality assurance standards.
H-1B fees fund the Apprenticeship: Closing the Skills Gap grant program. Awards ranging from $500,000 to $6 million each will go to 28 public-private apprenticeship partnerships led by institutions of higher education; state systems of higher education; nonprofit trade, industry or employer associations; labor unions; or labor-management organizations partnering with businesses ready to train apprentices. This grant program places a heavy emphasis on private sector partnership, with a corresponding 45% match of federal funds awarded.
For more information, visit www.dol.gov.