A skilled workforce is critical for America’s economic future. Skilled workers attract employers, and highly skilled workers earn higher wages, thus strengthen local economie. The right skills can help workers and their families achieve the American dream of prosperity through hard work. For much of the 20th Century, most workers could gain the skills needed to support a middle-
class lifestyle in high school. However, as the economy has evolved, it has become increasingly important for workers to have training beyond high school to be competitive in the workforce.
Some level of post-secondary training is now necessary for most workers to be successful.
A new report from Michigan, Benefits of Michigan Apprenticeship Programs, dives into these issues and more.
Some of the findings of the report include:
- Registered apprenticeship programs are an important tool for developing a skilled workforce. Apprenticeship programs consist of a combination of on-the-job training and classroom instruction. Workers earn a full-time wage with benefits while they are participating in the programs.
- Registered apprenticeship programs generally last four years, but can run from one to six years. Graduates of registered apprenticeship programs receive a stackable
and portable credential that demonstrates their skill level to employers. A stackable credential is a recognized degree or certificate that is part of a sequence of credentials that can be accumulated over time and move an individual along a career pathway (Social Policy Research 2014). Portability means that the credential is recognized and valued by a large number of employers.
- Registered apprenticeship programs compare very favorably with community colleges.