Apprenticeships Will Help Solve America’s Looming Labor Shortage

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July 25, 2017

Both sides of the political spectrum agree on at least one thing: America needs more apprentices.

Writing for Forbes, researchers Katherine S. Newman and Hella Winston argue that an increase in apprenticeships will address a few of the nation’s biggest issues, including the need for skilled labor and the opportunity for good jobs for people who don’t attend college.

As Baby Boomers retire, the nation will be facing a labor shortage. Apprentices will eventually fill those gaps.

Over 600,000 manufacturing jobs are posted at any given time that require post-high school training, but less than a college degree. These are exactly the kinds of jobs for which technical education and apprenticeship are the best preparation. Employers report that they can’t fill many of these jobs, and they’re wondering where they are going to find these workers.

Newman and Winston used Germany as an example. The European nation is a manufacturing powerhouse and major power in international trade in part because it invests $9 billion annually on around 1.4 million apprentices. The U.S., meanwhile, allocates $2.7 billion for roughly 500,000 apprentices.

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