Apprenticeship Workshop Training Modules

Apprenticeship Training Modules

With the support of the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy, NCWD/Youth developed two sets of apprenticeship training modules and a strategic planning exercise that can be used after either module. The modules can be used by individuals to learn independently about apprenticeship, or a facilitator can use the modules to train groups. These materials will be useful for youth service professionals, workforce board administrators, state and local apprenticeship coordinators, representatives from community colleges and other training providers, and potential and current apprenticeship employers.

  1. Module 1 - "What Apprenticeship Is and Working with Employers to Start Apprenticeship Programs"
  2. Module 2 - "Preparing, Placing, and Supporting Youth and Young Adults with Disabilities in Apprenticeship"
  3. Strategic Planning Exercise
  4. Related Resources

What is Apprenticeship?

Apprenticeship has a long and rich history of preparing workers for skilled jobs to support the economy. In 1937, the Fitzgerald Act, also known as the National Apprenticeship Act, authorized and formalized a national apprenticeship system in the United States, overseen by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL). Apprenticeship is first and foremost a job that allows for learning job skills while earning an income, apprentice wage progression, and attainment of a widely recognized certificate of completion and proficiency. These core characteristics make apprenticeship a highly desirable form of training for many entry-level workers. There are currently around 1000 occupations that are recognized by USDOL’s Office of Apprenticeship, and new occupations are continually added.

Apprenticeship and Youth, Including Youth with Disabilities

The transition from adolescence to adulthood is an uneven path for youth, many of whom make the transition successfully, completing their education and moving towards a career path. Unfortunately, for young people with disabilities, the challenges are greater and the outcomes sometimes less positive. Youth with disabilities are half as likely as their peers to participate in postsecondary education. By the time they reach adulthood their prospects for employment are much worse than their peers without disabilities.

While apprenticeship is largely thought of as a program for training adult workers (The average age for an apprentice is 27 years old.), there are significant numbers of older youth (18- to 23-year-olds) who participate in apprenticeship programs. School and non-school-based youth programs can serve as feeder programs for youth to enter registered apprenticeship programs.  Some of these programs have formal linkages with apprenticeship programs while others provide training in the major apprenticeable occupations. Youth apprenticeship and school-to-apprenticeship programs tend to be based in secondary schools, while pre-apprenticeship programs (generally for youth under 21) tend to operate outside the public secondary school system.

Module 1 Materials - What Apprenticeship Is and Working with Employers to Start Apprenticeship Programs

This module provides an overview and history of apprenticeship in the U.S., including how apprenticeship is structured, regulated, and implemented at the national, state, and local levels. It also includes information about the role of employers in apprenticeship and how to reach out to them.

Module 2 Materials - Preparing, Placing, and Supporting Youth and Young Adults with Disabilities in Apprenticeship

This module provides specific information about serving youth with disabilities and connecting them to apprenticeship programming and opportunities, including information on disability disclosure, workplace accommodations, and working with employers and apprenticeship programs to include youth with disabilities.

Strategic Planning Exercise

This exercise can be completed after either module or independently and includes information on how to create an action plan to start or connect to apprenticeship programming, including partnership development and resource allocation.

Related Resources:

Need help viewing a document? View our document help page.

Have a comment or suggestion in regard to our site? Please send us your feedback.