NORRISTOWN — Business representatives from the Greater Philadelphia area discussed needed resources for young people Tuesday morning during National Apprenticeship Week.
According to Regional Apprenticeship Co-ordinator Adina Tayar, the Pathways to Registered Apprenticeships and Future Careers for Youth and Young Adults involved employers, parents, students and other stakeholders.
The conversation during the hour-long virtual panel focused on apprenticeship programs in Bucks and Montgomery counties.
In its eighth year, National Apprenticeship Week continues through Nov. 20, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Apprenticeships can include paid work, classroom training, earned credentials, mentoring, paid work or on-the-job training, according to Daniela Demiravich, apprenticeship training manager for the Apprenticeship and Training Division of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.
“It’s all about … helping people understand the different paths, the different industries, and as much as possible get a taste of them, get to know them and get information about them to make decisions going forward,” Thayer said.
Thayer, who hosted Tuesday’s event, emphasized that apprenticeships are available in a “variety of industries” including advanced manufacturing, biotechnology, construction, cybersecurity, engineering, financial services, healthcare, hospitality, information technology, transportation and telecommunications.
In Montgomery County, resources are provided through the Montgomery County Intermediate Division’s MontcoWorks NOW program.
“We want to make sure our students have as much work-based learning experience as possible so they can make an informed decision about what they want to do after high school,” said Danielle Haminski, administrator of the College and Career Prep Program ‘eri. “To do that, we need to have systems in place that provide internships, job shadows, industry tours, co-op education, career mentoring.”
Khominsky came up with an initiative aimed at forgiveness to 100 Montgomery County high school students an inside look at graduate employment opportunities.
A $118,007 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry’s Business Education Partnership helped fund the program for eligible students at Abington, Norristown, North Penn and Upper Perkiomen high schools.
In an interview with MediaNews Group earlier this year, Haminski said the agency also plans to use “toolkits and templates for these businesses and industries so they can better provide on-the-job learning experiences in the form of industry tours and in the form of job observation experiences.” .
Chominski singled out Cheltenham, North Penn and Souderton high schools for their efforts to provide students with the work-based learning experiences they need.
The agency is also under the umbrella of MontcoWorks, the Montgomery County Career Agency. Jane Stein, Research and Productivity Officer for the Workforce Development Board, highlighted the opportunities to help area residents, and noted The career of tomorrow job fair held last month.
At Montgomery County Community College, Kyle Longacre, Dean of Workforce and Economic Development, gave attendees an inside look at an upcoming pilot initiative: the MontcoWorks Apprenticeship Program (MAP).
The two-year program will focus on industrial mechanics, according to Longacre, who said he would like to see it replicated in other subject areas, such as information technology.
Students aged 18 and over can apply. Once the community college is approved by the state, Longacre said students who complete the program will earn 36 credits that can be applied “towards an associate’s degree in applied science” as well as “work credentials” that help in “maintenance of the family”. wages in our local communities.”
Longacre stressed that mentoring is a “critical component” of the program.
“We are excited to be a part of this national celebration, and with the help of MAP and the urgency of MontcoWorks NOW, and the good work that has been done there in terms of creating work-based learning opportunities, we are determined to join this national conversation, and represent Montgomery County and the south -eastern Pennsylvania as a strong foundation for economic development,” Longacre said.
And in Bucks County, the local community college has pre-apprenticeship programs in metalworking and industrial maintenance, with a building and construction pre-apprenticeship program expected to launch in the spring of 2023, according to Sue Herring, executive director of workforce development at Bucks County Community College.
Along with the programs, key professionals highlighted during Tuesday’s event how an apprenticeship can help a person determine whether the field is of interest… or not.
“I think all of our generations have stories about the paths we’ve taken and what we would have done differently, and a lot of that is based on data and opportunity and what we can create for our residents and our counties.” – said Tayar.