Add ‘free apprenticeship’ to ‘free college’
“Free college” programs should include tuition-free apprenticeships, writes New America’s Iris Palmer.
Arkansas, Kentucky, and Indiana try to predict “what kind of employees the labor market is going to need,” she writes.
Arkansas’ ArFuture program supports certificate and associate’s degrees that are either related to science, technology, engineering, and math or address identified regional areas of high need. Kentucky’s Work Ready Scholarship program pays for a number of industry recognized certificate and diploma programs. Indiana’s Workforce Ready Grant supports both credit and non-credit certificates that are identified by the state as high need and high wage.
The next step is to fund classroom training for apprentices who already are getting on-the-job training from their employers, Palmer writes.
In North Carolina, employers fund on-the-job and community college training for apprentices, who earn a wage while improving their skills.