Apprentice Coordinators

Apprenticeship

One of the top priorities identified in this state and around the entire country is the growing demand of highly trained and skilled workers in the construction trades.

In order to promote training and recruitment into registered apprenticeship programs to meet these demands, the Pennsylvania State Building & Construction Trades Council promotes the use of Pre-Apprentice Training Programs, developed by the Building & Construction Trades Department Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee, in public and private schools. This will give many students the preparation they need to enter into the apprenticeship programs in the construction trades and help lower the high numbers of students that choose to drop out of school. Due to the increased cost of a college education, many students that graduate high school never plan on attending college.

Apprenticeship training is the best way to provide a highly skilled and trained workforce in the construction industry. Apprentices that participate in a program registered with the United States Department of Labor are provided training in two ways. They get to work on a job for a participating contractor in order to receive credit for on-the-job training hours and they attend training classes related to the trade they have chosen. Most apprenticeship training programs are four (4) or five (5) years and as the apprentice progresses their pay increases. The training costs are provided by the apprenticeship program that is jointly managed by Labor and Management.

Apprenticeship News

WASHINGTON, DC – The following statement was released today in response to the Trump Administration’s announcement of planned initiatives designed to increase apprenticeship education and training
[6/20/2017]
towens@buildingtrades.org NABTU Apprenticeship Programs Seen as Model for Expansion WASHINGTON, DC – The following statement was released today in response to the Trump Administration’s announcement of planned initiatives designed to increase apprenticeship education and training across the US economy: “We commend the Administration for elevating and promoting the power of apprenticeship programs for workers and whole industries. As the preeminent organization involved in apprenticeship readiness and apprenticeship education and training today, North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU), its affiliated unions, and its contractor partners appreciate efforts by the Federal Government to increase utilization of apprenticeship education. “Among construction apprentices in the US today, 75 percent are trained in the joint apprentice training committee (JATC) system, which the Building Trades operate in cooperation with their contractor partners. We know from over 100 years of experience that robust, labor-management commitment to and investment in craft training ensures the necessary and portable skills for workers to meet specific demands of employers and entire industries, while also providing the means for individuals and communities to gain a foothold on the ladder to the middle class. Coupled with increased investments in infrastructure, apprenticeship can unleash broad, sustainable growth throughout the country while also allowing for career pathways for long under-served communities and those looking to embark on safe, highly skilled, productive and rewarding careers in the construction industry. “In the Building Trades, these apprenticeship career pathways have been fully developed through articulation agreements and other relationships with US colleges and universities. All Building Trades apprenticeship programs, for example, have been assessed for higher education credit. In fact, NABTU considers apprenticeship training ‘the other four-year degree.’ If the Building Trades training system, which includes both apprentice-level and journeyman-level training, was a degree granting college or university, it would be the largest degree granting college or university in the United States — over 5 times larger than Arizona State University. In fact, NABTU’s training infrastructure is rivaled only by the US military in terms of the quality and depth of skills training. “US Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta framed it correctly when he observed, ‘if you look into the Building Trades, there’s almost a billion [dollars] that’s spent every year, and that’s all private sector money. The Building Trades have put together labor management organizations that jointly invest in these apprenticeship programs because they know both on the labor side and the management side that a skilled workforce is critical to the Building Trades. And that’s how it’s worked for a number of years.’ “With over 1,650 training centers throughout the United States and 20,000 experienced and highly trained instructors, NABTU and its contractor partners will continue to promote our successful model and remain key stakeholders in this process initiated by the Administration to increase access to robust apprenticeship programs in other industries. We know well from experience that apprenticeship education can achieve the desired effects of both meeting the workforce needs of employers and industries, while also ensuring stable and prosperous middle-class careers for individual workers.” # # # ABOUT NABTU North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) is an alliance of 14 national and international unions that collectively represent over 3 million skilled craft professionals in the United States and Canada. In partnership with our signatory contractors, our unions invest over $1.2 billion annually to fund and operate over 1,900 joint labor-management apprenticeship training centers across North America.

Construction apprentices in Pa. Check out who is really doing the training in the Construction Industry!
[8/18/2015]
State of the Unions: Construction apprentices in Pa. By Jason Scott There are nearly 11,000 active apprentices in Pennsylvania, including more than 7,700 in a construction-related trade, according to the state Department of Labor and Industry. The Finishing Trades Institute of the Mid-Atlantic Region cites a unionization rate of about 82 percent in the construction and building trades. “Apprenticeship numbers, in general, are low now, mostly because construction programs make up the majority of apprenticeship in the state, and the construction industry has been deeply affected by the down economy for the last five years,” said Mike Schurr, FTI's education director. Pennsylvania had more than 14,000 apprentices six years ago, said Schurr, who is on the State Apprenticeship and Training Council. “There has been a slight uptick in numbers over the last couple months,” he said. “I can see an increase in my six programs, which is usually indicative of the industry as a whole. If one gets busy, we usually all do.” Anything to do with “green” is in high demand, he added, citing growth in electricians, glaziers and plumbers, as well as heavy highway crafts. On the merit shop, or non-union side, the Keystone Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors Inc., the largest of the four ABC chapters in the commonwealth, is expanding its Rapho Township facility to accommodate growth in its educational offerings. ABC Keystone has averaged about 256 students in five trades over the last decade, said G. David Sload, director of education. The average graduating class is 64 students. Sload is projecting to grow classes to more than 400 per year by 2018, with an average graduation of 100 students. ABC Keystone offers carpentry, electrical, HVAC, sheet metal, and plumbing and pipefitting. The chapter is looking to expand to nine trades, including an off-site heavy equipment operator program. It will split plumbing and pipefitting and add welding and millwright apprentices. That would increase projections, Sload said. By Jason Scott July 4, 2014 at 3:00 AM

Legislators Support Unions and Apprenticeships in Construction Industry (see photos in our Photo Gallery)
[6/8/2015]

Third Annual Apprentice Training Day in At the State Capitol
[7/17/2013]

Unions Gather To Celebrate Apprentice Awareness Day
[6/22/2012]

Apprenticeship Events