Apprenticeship Resources

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 Apprenticeship News


What's Working - Training At-Risk Youth Hammer Heads is a 12-week boot camp-style employment program that targets youth living in priority and underresourced communities in Toronto. Since 2010, 194 Hammer Heads graduates have started registered apprenticeships in the construction industry, and 58 youth have been removed from social assistance for an estimated savings of $904,449 so far.

International Foundation Blog :  Apprenticeship Programs Getting More Attention As the economy improves, the construction industry and other apprenticeship trades are having a difficult time keeping up with the demand for skilled labor. An emphasis on the necessity of college by high school teachers, counselors and parents has created an environment that is less than conducive to a career in the skilled trades. In addition, recruiting women and minorities has also proved difficult for many trades. Could an increased focus on apprenticeships help rebuild the trades? Posted 07/28/2015

White House Conference On Worker Training Will Look At St. Louis Apprenticeship Program A White House conference Friday will include discussions about a new program in St. Louis to train non-traditional workers through apprentice programs in construction, manufacturing and other trades. Posted 04/27/2015

DOL Blog Post - 10 Good Jobs That Don’t Need a Degree Having a college degree is more important than ever when it comes to being competitive in today’s job market. But there are still some occupations that don’t require a degree − and which pay good wages. Typically, some kind of technical or professional training is required, such as an apprenticeship, on-the-job training or a licensing program. Posted 03/03/2015

International Foundation Blog: Apprenticeship Leaders Communicate Their Challenges — At the Annual Employee Benefits Conference in Boston last fall, International Foundation staff led a series of focus groups to collect direct feedback from members and provide assistance in driving strategic initiatives. These constituents communicated challenges that they are facing and shared strategies they are using to overcome these challenges. Posted 03/03/2015




Articles, Papers and Survey Data

United States U.S. Resources

Attention JATCs: It's Our Time To Shine  To take advantage of the Obama administration's new emphasis on apprenticeship training, joint apprenticeship and training committees (JATCs) may want to work with schools and employers to emulate the Swiss model of career and technical education. Featured in the September 2014 issue of Benefits Magazine. By Alex Gromada, Ron Tierney and John S. Gaal, Ed.D.

Top Trends in Jointly Managed Apprenticeship Programs: 2014 Survey Results   Nearly two-thirds of training fund representatives view hiring opportunities for skilled laborers as somewhat or extremely positive for the next two years as a result of increased demand and talent shortages. These findings and more are part of the International Foundation's exclusive survey of apprenticeship funds, Top Trends in Jointly Managed Apprenticeship Programs: 2014 Survey Results. Free to Foundation members. 

U.S Department of Labor Blog: Apprenticeship 101: Earn While You Learn   How would you like to receive a paycheck while being trained in a high-skill occupation that has a starting salary around $50,000? If that sounds appealing, you might want to consider participating in a Registered Apprenticeship program.

What's Working - Conversation with Joseph Maloney
 Helmets to Hardhats (H2H)—a partnership started by unions, employers and government in the United States and Canada— connects armed forces reservists and transitioning veterans to apprenticeships and skilled jobs in the construction industry and related fields. In the United States, where H2H began in 2003, National Guard, Reserve and transitioning active-duty military service members in most cases become apprentices with jointly managed training and education funds. In 2012, the program spread to Canada, where reservists and veterans are matched up with employers and often enter an apprenticeship program through joint labour-management apprenticeship programs. Joseph Maloney founded the U.S. program while serving as the international secretary-treasurer of the Building and Construction Trades Department of AFL-CIO, based in Washington, D.C. Maloney returned to Canada in 2006 and is an international vice president of the Western Canada Section of the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers. Maloney spearheaded the implementation of the program in Canada and serves as the chairman of H2H in Canada. He spoke recently about H2H with editor Chris Vogel, CEBS. 

Recommendations to Encourage Registered Apprenticeship - Community-Based Organization Partnerships The purpose of this paper is to better understand the key ingredients in successful Registered Apprenticeship/Community-Based Organization partnerships, the key challenges preventing partnerships, and to document feedback and recommendations from stakeholders about how the DOL might foster better engagement and bring successful partnerships to scale.

21st Century Apprenticeship: A Shared Vision for Increasing Opportunity, Innovation, and Competitiveness for American Workers and EmployersThe broad role of the Advisory Committee on Apprenticeship  (ACA) is to advise the U.S. Secretary of Labor on critical matters related to the Registered Apprenticeship system in the U.S., and to offer related recommendations. This report discusses the shared vision, goals, and objectives developed by the four main ACA workgroups, and offers the ACA's recommendations for leveraging Registered Apprenticeship to improve competitiveness and prosperity.

Yes, An Apprenticeship Fund Is An ERISA Fund The U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), has made audits of apprenticeship and training funds a top priority in recent years. Knowing what to expect when EBSA arrives at the fund's door will help administrators and trustees be in the best position to respond to, and survive, an audit/ investigation. From October 2012 Benefits Magazine . By Gary Thayer and James W. Versocki

An Effectiveness Assessment and Cost-Benefit Analysis of Registered Apprenticeship in 10 States The Employment and Training Administration released a report showing the net benefits outweigh the net costs of Registered Apprenticeship (RA) programs. The report, titled "An Effectiveness Assessment and Cost-Benefit Analysis of Registered Apprenticeship in 10 States," found the social benefits of an average 36 year career of an apprentice exceed the social costs by more than $49,000. The report suggests specific strategies to enhance the success of women in the RA program, such as building women's basic skills and developing accurate expectations about particular occupations, providing access to adequate child care, enforcing policies to combat harassment at male-dominated worksites, and providing peer groups for support and encouragement.

Attention JATCs: It's Not 2007 Anymore! Based on the author's workshop, "Energizing Apprenticeship and Training Programs," at the Construction Industry Benefits Conference in September 2011 in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, this article focuses on the importance of running a training fund like a business. Featured in the January 2012 issue of Benefits Magazine . By John S. Gaal, Ed.D.

Helping Apprentices and Journeyworkers Become "Financially Fluent" The International Foundation published an article in the September 2011 issue of Benefits Magazine , stressing the importance of financial education for apprentices and journeyworkers. While the article references U.S.-based organizations, the information is also relevant to those in Canada. By Andrew Staab.

The Intricacies of Apprenticeship Training Fund Collections —Fiduciaries of apprenticeship training funds have a responsibility to see that contributions are collected. Tough economic times may make that more difficult and trustees need a comprehensive strategy with a variety of tools to ensure timely, effective collection efforts. From the June 2011 issue of Benefits Magazine . By Karen Sollars, CEBS.

The Training Trilogy: One Union, Three Experiments in Sustainability —This paper contains three innovative approaches that offer jointly-managed training trust funds ideas on how to adjust to a seemingly unpredictable future. For too long, union-affiliated training programs—especially, in the construction trades—have been accused of marginalizing select populations, not devising progressive recruitment strategies, and/or reacting to the effects of the global marketplace. The following three case studies move beyond the stereotypical apprenticeship training model by examining: 1) the power of relationships between labor, management, and the community; 2) the importance of holding stakeholders accountable; and 3) the significance of leading change in one's industry sector.

Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Programs: Results from a National Survey —This publication shares findings from a WSI-conducted survey of pre-apprenticeship programs in the construction trades. Based on responses from 260 programs nationwide, the report presents information about program size, services offered, populations served, funding sources, and successes and challenges in placing trainees in apprenticeships or jobs. Funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the impetus for the project was a desire to explore the capacity of the workforce system to prepare individuals—particularly low-income and minority jobseekers—for jobs in the construction industry. It is hoped that the report will contribute to discussions about the need for investment in skills training and about ways to ensure that apprenticeships and construction-related jobs are open to more low-income, minority and women candidates.

  Canada Canadian Resources
The Completion Behaviour of Registered Apprentices: Who Continues, Who Quits, and Who Completes Programs? —The number of registered apprentices in Canada more than doubled between 1995 and 2007, yet successful completion of apprenticeship programs increased by only one-third as much. Uncovering the factors related to low completion rates is a necessary first step to ensuring that today's skilled labour is replaced in the future. This study utilizes the 2007 National Apprenticeship Survey (NAS) to investigate the completion behaviour of individuals enrolled in apprenticeship programs.

Case Studies
What's Working - Apprenticeship Financial Education  It's not uncommon for a fifth-year apprentice, now earning close to journeyman wages, to show up for work in a brand-new pickup truck. But apprentices often don't realize they may not be employed for the full year and that making monthly truck payments could become tough. By Chris Vogel, CEBS. 

What's Working - Innovative Apprenticeship Training —In 2011, International Foundation staff wrote a Benefits Magazine case study highlighting the innovative practices that the New Jersey Apprenticeship Training and Education Fund are using to overcome a series of challenges.   

Suggestions for Future Case Studies U.S. ResourcesCanadian Resources

Do you know of any training and education funds that are using innovative practices to improve their performance? Would you like to share your innovative ideas? Please submit them here.

Links to External Organizations

United States U.S. Organizations        

Canada Canadian Organizations

Provincial/Territorial Apprenticeship Sites

Future Educational Offerings from the International Foundation

61st U.S. Annual Employee Benefits Conference - Sunday, November 8 - Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - Hawaii Convention Center, Honolulu, HI Each year, 120-plus sessions are categorized into specific focus areas to help you build a personal conference itinerary that fits your needs. Sessions range in complexity from basic to advanced and our practical approach to scheduling includes repeat offerings of many sessions, giving you ample opportunity to attend the sessions that interest you the most.

Institute for Apprenticeship, Training and Education Programs - Monday, January 18 - Wednesday, January 20, 2016 - Westin Mission Hills, Rancho Mirage, CA The looming skills shortage offers a unique opportunity for apprenticeship programs to expand in the coming years. For students, apprenticeship programs offer an alternative pathway to sustainable and secure employment. The Institute for Apprenticeship, Training and Education Programs is a biennial conference dedicated to education on the effective management of training trust funds and best practices in apprenticeship programs.  This conference covers a variety of topics from recruitment and retention to adult learning and fiduciary responsibility.

Suggestions for Future Program Topics U.S. ResourcesCanadian Resources

Do you have a suggestion for an apprenticeship-related topic for future International Foundation educational programs? You can provide input here.

Apprenticeship News

International Foundation Blog : Apprenticeship Programs Getting More Attention As the economy improves, the construction industry and other apprenticeship trades are having difficult time keeping up with the demand for skilled labor. An emphasis on the necessity of college by high school teachers, counselors and parents has created an environment that is less than conducive to a career in the skilled trades. In addition, recruiting women and minorities has also proved difficult for many trades. Could an increased focus on apprenticeships help rebuild the trades? Posted 07/28/2015.

Canadian Premiers Sign Apprenticeship Mobility Pact Canada's premiers have signed an agreement that will facilitate the mobility of apprentices across the country. The Provincial-Territorial Apprentice Mobility Protocol will enable mutual recognition of technical training, work experience and examination results for apprentices moving from one area to another. Posted 07/21/2015

Ontario Creates Construction Health and Safety Advisory Group
Ontario has established an advisory group to assist the government in the development and implementation of a Construction Health and Safety Action Plan. As set out in the Ministry of Labour 2014-15 mandate letter, the Action Plan will strengthen workplace injury and illness prevention for construction workers across the province. Posted 05/27/2015

Tricks Of The Trade - Skilled Trades More Technical Than Ever

According to the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF), 90% of businesses use digital technology at the workplace. Despite such advances, CAF surveys suggest students, parents and educators all still believe the skilled trades involve hard, physical labour, says executive director Sarah Watts-Rynard. Posted 05/13/2015








Articles, Papers and Survey Data
What's Working - Apprenticeship Financial Education  It's not uncommon for a fifth-year apprentice, now earning close to journeyman wages, to show up for work in a brand-new pickup truck. But apprentices often don't realize they may not be employed for the full year and that making monthly truck payments could become tough. By Chris Vogel, CEBS.

What's Working - Conversation with Joseph Maloney — Helmets to Hardhats (H2H)—a partnership started by unions, employers and government in the United States and Canada— connects armed forces reservists and transitioning veterans to apprenticeships and skilled jobs in the construction industry and related fields. In the United States, where H2H began in 2003, National Guard, Reserve and transitioning active-duty military service members in most cases become apprentices with jointly managed training and education funds. In 2012, the program spread to Canada, where reservists and veterans are matched up with employers and often enter an apprenticeship program through joint labour-management apprenticeship programs. Joseph Maloney founded the U.S. program while serving as the international secretary-treasurer of the Building and Construction Trades Department of AFL-CIO, based in Washington, D.C. Maloney returned to Canada in 2006 and is an international vice president of the Western Canada Section of the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers. Maloney spearheaded the implementation of the program in Canada and serves as the chairman of H2H in Canada. He spoke recently about H2H with editor Chris Vogel, CEBS. 

Trends in Registered Apprenticeship Training in Canada, 1991 to 2009— Statistics Canada studied registered apprenticeship from 1991 to 2009, focusing on four major trade groups: electricians, automotive service technicians, carpenters and plumbers, and pipefitters and steamfitters. The study examined the trends in total number of apprenticeship registrations for each of the trade groups and trends in new registrations, completions and discontinuers. Between 1991 and 2009, total registered apprenticeship numbers more than doubled from 192,945 to 409,038. New registrations more than doubled while completions increased 56.6%. Total registrations for the four largest trade groups had steady growth between 1991 and 2009, except the carpenters saw a drop between 2008 and 2009. The number of newly registered apprentices dropped in all four groups between 2008 and 2009; however, the number of completers increased.

The Completion Behaviour of Registered Apprentices: Who Continues, Who Quits, and Who Completes Programs?—The number of registered apprentices more than doubled between 1995 and 2007, yet successful completion of apprenticeship programs increased by only one-third as much. Uncovering the factors related to low completion rates is a necessary first step to ensuring that today's skilled labour is replaced in the future. This study utilizes the 2007 National Apprenticeship Survey from Statistics Canada to investigate the completion behaviour of those enrolled in apprenticeship programs.

Case Studies

Suggestions for Future Case Studies

Do you know of any training and education funds that are using innovative practices to improve their performance? Would you like to share your innovative ideas? Please submit them here.

Links to External Organizations

Future Educational Offerings from the International Foundation

48th Annual Canadian Employee Benefits Conference - Sunday, November 22 - Wednesday, November 25, 2015 - The Mirage, Las Vegas, NV The International Foundation's 48th Annual Canadian Employee Benefits Conference brings you solid, straightforward education you need to make the decisions that are in the best interests of plan members and beneficiaries. The Annual Conference is designed to deliver you updated legislative developments, the latest cost-saving ideas, creative approaches to new challenges and collaboration with your peers who are dealing with the same issues you face.

Institute for Apprenticeship, Training and Education Programs - Monday, January 18 - Wednesday, January 20, 2016 - Westin Mission Hills, Rancho Mirage, CA The looming skills shortage offers a unique opportunity for apprenticeship programs to expand in the coming years. For students, apprenticeship programs offer an alternative pathway to sustainable and secure employment. The Institute for Apprenticeship, Training and Education Programs is a biennial conference dedicated to education on the effective management of training trust funds and best practices in apprenticeship programs.  This conference covers a variety of topics from recruitment and retention to adult learning and fiduciary responsibility.

Suggestions for Future Program Topics

Do you have a suggestion for an apprenticeship-related topic for future International Foundation educational programs? You can provide input here.