Celebrating the women leaders driving the US Apprenticeship initiative
Today November 16th, NAW 2023 theme is “Women in Registered Apprenticeship”. A special day drawing attention to and recognizing the role of women in nation building, society building and the character building of the next generation via apprenticeships.
Supported by recent U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) partnerships and investments, the number of female apprentices has more than tripled from Fiscal Years 2014 to 2022. In 2022, women comprised about half of the national labor force and although there were over 80,000 active female apprentices in 2022, women’s enrollment in Registered Apprenticeship has not matched its share of the working population which highlights a huge opportunity for expansion. The occupations that have recently seen the largest increases in female apprentices were nurse assistant, childcare development specialist, truck driver, pharmacy specialist, and electrician. There is evidence that women participate and succeed in Registered Apprenticeship programs at higher rates when provided supportive services such as career-readiness coaching, childcare, and transportation and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship offers those resources.
As a woman led startup, ApprenticePath is privileged and proud to support and celebrate Women’s role in Apprenticeships. Our team salutes the following women leaders driving the US Apprenticeship initiative across public and private sector. It is guaranteed there are many more talented women leaders that are contributing to the US Apprenticeship journey, so we will continue to feature women leaders on a regular basis.
First Lady Jill Biden
First Lady Jill Biden has been a strong force promoting Apprenticeships to change lives. She launched the White House Apprenticeship Ambassador Initiative in Sept 2022 and the National Apprenticeship Week in Nov 2022. Last week on Nov 9, 2023, First Lady Biden travelled to Augusta and Pittsburgh for Workforce Hub convenings in each city, announcing commitments to equitable workforce development from dozens of Hub collaborators including Registered Apprenticeships and pre-apprenticeships expansion.
Vice President Kamala Harris
Vice President Kamal Harris has been a strong supporter and torch bearer for apprenticeships as a pathway for minorities and underrepresented groups. Recently she participated in a moderated conversation Honoring Apprenticeship Week in Boston on Nov 9, 2023. Vice President Harris also emphasized that the Administration is working to ensure “that apprenticeship programs will very much be the way to go to build up the workforce to then do the work we have funded.” She also highlighted their ability to provide opportunities to many Americans and enable the United States to lead around the world.
In alphabetic listing order:
Cierra is the Division Director, Division of Industry Engagement, The Office of Apprenticeship. She drives strategic engagements with the industry. Aiming for the moon, she recently was involved in a Space Industry and Registered Apprenticeship collaborating with The White House National Space Council.
Denise is the Director of Apprenticeships, Colorado Department of Labor, and Employment. She leads efforts for policy and practice related to Apprenticeship Expansion in the state of Colorado.
Patricia is the Regional Director, US Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship based in SFO, CA. Her regional office monitors programs, services and benefits provided under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Also providing technical assistance to state and local governments and other organizations related to apprenticeships. Her office supports Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Washington.
Jennifer is the Co-Founder, Executive Director, WTIA Workforce Institute & Apprenti. Apprenti, a Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA) institute is focused on bridging the tech talent and diversity gaps to meet evolving workforce needs. Jennifer has been widely recognized for her efforts via Apprenti to create alternative pathways to access tech talent and help organizations address digital skills shortages.
Marian is the Deputy Director for the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Her areas of focus include industry engagement, apprenticeship, and small business cybersecurity.
Maud is the Head of Career Connect Washington. She is leading the WA state’s effort to create a 10-year vision and strategic plan for building a statewide career-connected learning and apprenticeship system on behalf of WA state Gov. Jay Inslee.
Megan is the Deputy Administrator for The Office of Apprenticeship, DOL. One of the many initiatives launched under her leadership include her department’s partnership with IPC (an electronics firm) as part of its continuing effort to build a workforce to connect workers with good-paying jobs created by the CHIPs and Science Act and President Biden’s “Investing in America” agenda. The agreement enables IPC to offer paid training and experiential learning opportunities for skills needed to build critical components used in electronics systems.
Sasha is the industry engagement team lead at The Office of Apprenticeship, DOL. She and her team drum up industry support and participation in Apprenticeship initiatives including promotion, expansion, diversification, and modernization. Her team recently launched the Apprentice Trailblazer program.
Wendy serves as the 20th director of the Women’s Bureau, Department of Labor. She has held senior positions in Maryland state government and private philanthropy, overseeing large-scale, results-driven initiatives for worker and family economic justice. Her team overseas The Women in Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Occupations (WANTO) grants.
Kudos to these leaders for empowering women and nation building. ApprenticePath is proud to be part of this inclusive community.
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