For Immediate Release - July 28, 2016

Baker-Polito Administration To Expand Apprenticeship Opportunities with $200,000 Federal Grant

BOSTON, MA, July 28, 2016 --- The Baker-Polito Administration’s Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development announced today that $200,000 in federal ApprenticeshipUSA State Accelerator Grant funding from the United States Department of Labor will be used to expand and diversify apprenticeship opportunities and strengthen existing programs in Massachusetts.

“We welcome the flexibility and tools this funding provides to continue our focus on addressing the workforce skills gap and expanding apprenticeship opportunities that prepare a pipeline of skilled workers for future employment,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Ensuring our strong and skilled workforce continues to develop and succeed results in a prospering economic environment across the Commonwealth.” 

The grant will enable the Massachusetts Apprenticeship Initiative - a collaboration of 50 businesses, the state Department of Career Services, Division of Apprentice Standards, the Massachusetts Community Colleges Executive Office, the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative, and six local workforce development boards - to expand opportunities to other areas of the state, new industries, occupations and additional employers.

“As our state’s economy continues to grow, apprenticeships will play an increasingly important role in training individuals for job openings now and into the future, and supporting job growth and economic development across Massachusetts,” Lt. Governor Karyn Polito said.  

The Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, through the Department of Career Services and Division of Apprentice Standards, will build upon partnerships in an effort to expand the number of employers with apprenticeship programs.

“We look forward to the opportunities this funding will support to create more strategic partnerships in industries that already employ apprentices, while also reaching out to nontraditional industries for apprenticeship opportunities such as IT, healthcare, cyber-security, advanced manufacturing and others,” Labor and Workforce Development Secretary Ronald L. Walker, II said.

Under DOL requirements, all registered apprenticeship programs must include five components – on-the-job training, direct business involvement, related instruction, rewards for skill gains, and a national occupational credential.  The average starting salary for an apprentice graduate is more than $50,000 a year, and over the course of their careers apprentices earn $300,000 more, on average, in wages and benefits than their peers who did not participate in a registered apprentice program, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.