APPAM National Research Conference – November 2018 ,Washington D.C.
President Trump called for expanding apprenticeship at a White House ceremony last year. His first steps toward achieving this goal were signing an executive order titled “Expanding Apprenticeship in America,” doubling the funding for apprenticeships to $200 million, and establishing a task force on apprenticeship. Meanwhile, demonstrations sponsored by the Obama administration are well under way and a bipartisan group in Congress has sponsored apprenticeship expansion legislation. Nonetheless, the United States is far behind Australia, Canada, and England in scaling apprenticeships. The apprenticeship share of the workforce of these countries is about 9-10 times the apprenticeship share of the U.S. workforce.
U.S. official (or registered) apprenticeships have long been dominated by the construction trades and have operated in a highly complex world. Recently, renewed efforts have emerged to extend apprenticeship to a wide range of other occupations, to simplify the registered apprenticeship system, and to create “industry-recognized” apprenticeships. In addition, many states are developing their own initiatives to shift skill development policies toward apprenticeship.
This round table of top state officials, apprenticeship practitioners, and national and international experts will assess the new developments in the U.S. aimed at scaling apprenticeship. They will discuss initiatives taking place at the state and local levels, barriers and opportunities for apprenticeship expansion they are experiencing, lessons from other countries and from U.S. states that have led to apprenticeship expansion, and federal and state policies that can strengthen the role of apprenticeship in the U.S. while maintaining high quality. The conversation will also examine and discuss the findings and recommendations of the President’s Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion that were published in the summer of 2018.