A spotlight on apprenticeships

By AACC 21st Century Center Staff

A roundup of information for National Apprenticeship Week

This week, we celebrate the 7th annual National Apprenticeship Week (NAW). During NAW, industry, labor, equity, workforce, education, and government leaders showcase the successes and value of Registered Apprenticeship.

Last week, the White House issued a Proclamation on National Apprenticeship Week, stating support for Registered Apprenticeships.

“As we build our economy back better and continue to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, we have seen the especially important role apprenticeships play in providing training to workers looking to re-enter the workforce and young people who are seeking to enter the work force — in each case providing an opportunity to train and develop the skills needed for jobs of the future while earning a good income,” the proclamation said.

The proclamation also urged “the Congress, State and local governments, educational institutions, industry and labor leaders, apprentices, and all Americans to support Registered Apprenticeship programs in the United States of America and to raise awareness of their importance in building a diverse and robust workforce to strengthen our national economy.”

Community colleges across the country are hosting events to get both students and employers excited about apprenticeships. A number are holding information sessions about apprenticeship opportunities for current and potential students.

Oakland Community College in Michigan is hosting two informational events. Discover Apprenticeships, a virtual event on Nov. 17, is designed to provide Oakland County businesses with information about the value of offering Registered Apprenticeships to build a talent pipeline that can help address workforce challenges. A pre-apprenticeship information session is for students interested in learning about the college’s no-cost, pre-apprenticeship program and how it can provide students a career path in manufacturing.

In Missouri, Metropolitan Community College will celebrate students who are completing apprenticeships – and will celebrate the companies that have apprentices. The college also launched earlier this month a Manufacturing Leadership Skills Series designed to advance leadership and management skills training for first- and second-line supervisors – those who often supervise apprentices.

The Foundation for California Community Colleges is focusing on equity in apprenticeships. The Foundation’s Apprenticeship Support Network team on Tuesday is rolling out a new toolkit, “Building and Growing Apprenticeship with Equity in Mind: An Equitable Apprenticeships Toolkit.” The toolkit provides education and workforce stakeholders planning and implementing apprenticeships with guidance in thinking about an apprenticeship with an equity lens.

A list of events happening this week is available on Apprenticeship.gov’s NAW web page.

Looking to develop or refine apprenticeship programs at your college? The American Association of Community Colleges has a free online toolkit for colleges and employers. The Virtual Apprenticeship Network includes best practices from more than 60 community colleges that have been involved in the U.S. Department of Labor-funded Expanding Community College Apprenticeship (ECCA) Initiative.

How will you recognize National Apprenticeship Week? Sound off on LinkedIn.

AACC 21st Century Center Staff

is a contributor to the 21st-Century Center.