Gov. Phil Murphy announced a new, multi-million-dollar grant program to spur the creation and expansion of apprenticeship programs in non-traditional business sectors.
In March, Governor Murphy announced plans to create the New Jersey Apprenticeship Network to promote a new path for state residents to enter high-skilled careers through paid apprenticeships that often include college credit. In partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development’s new Office of Apprenticeship is focused on creating apprenticeship opportunities in high-growth sectors such as advanced manufacturing, renewable energy, IT, health care, life sciences, and more.
“The NJ Apprenticeship Network is an important step toward building a stronger and fairer New Jersey economy,” said Governor Murphy. “This major investment in our people will provide the tools for New Jersey residents to build meaningful careers in critical, high-growth professions, and puts us on the path to lead on workforce development and reclaim our status as the state of innovation.”
Through the grant program – Growing Apprenticeships in Nontraditional Sectors (GAINS) – the Office of Apprenticeship is investing $4.5 million to support a 21st century apprenticeship network. The grants offset costs for businesses who invest in their workers through quality on-the-job training and classroom instruction.
“After meeting with hundreds of individual businesses, employees, trade associations, community groups, parents, teachers, and school administrators, it is clear that a career pathway with on-the-job learning can help fill jobs at all skill levels,” said Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo. “In my mind, there is almost no industry sector that wouldn’t benefit from a robust apprenticeship program.”
The Office of Apprenticeship serves as a one-stop shop to assist businesses with the logistics of expanding and training, and offers New Jersey residents the dignity of meaningful work and the promise of upward mobility.
GAINS is open to employers, trade associations, labor unions, community-based organizations, vocational schools, and other training providers interested in developing or expanding U.S. DOL Registered Apprenticeship programs.
The goals of the grant are to increase the number of Registered Apprenticeship Programs and the number of apprentices; assist small businesses in developing effective programs; provide trainings that lead to credentials, licenses, and/or college credits; increase worker productivity and retention; and develop a workforce with the skills and qualifications demanded by the State’s high-growth industries.
In a related action, Governor Murphy and Commissioner Asaro-Angelo last week signed an agreement with the Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce (DIHK) to work cooperatively to assist German businesses with a presence in New Jersey that are interested in starting or expanding an apprenticeship program.
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