“The apprenticeship infrastructure of North America’s Building Trades Unions, which today encompasses over 1,900 training centers across the United States and Canada, and which is privately funded through collectively bargained contributions that exceed $1.3 billion per year, offers young men and women the chance to work and further their education, without the burden of student loans.”
– Sean McGarvey
President of the North America’s Building Trades Unions
51% of apprenticeship programs anticipate an increase in the number of minority apprentices in their programs during the next two years.
For over 100 years, North America’s Building Trades Unions and its signatory contractors have funded and operated a skilled cra apprenticeship system that is the envy of the world.
Apprenticeship and workplace-based training is an “earn while you learn” system that offers young people the chance to learn from the best trained construction workers in North America. When they complete their apprenticeship, they also have a portable, nationally recognized credential that they can take anywhere in the country, one that comes with good pay and benefits that will support them and their families.
An additional important feature is that most apprenticeship programs have been assessed for college credit, which participants can apply toward an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.
To be sure,apprenticeship is the “other four-year degree.”
Apprenticeship programs have also proven to provide a greater return for employers. Economic return on investment (ROI) has shown that employers gain a return for cra training of as much as $3 to every $1 that is invested; accounted for by improved safety, elimination of rework, and increased productivity of the cra worker. Similarly, those completing an apprenticeship earn substantially more over a career than the average two-year college degree graduate.
The joint administration of apprenticeship and training enables contractors and cra organizations to develop and modify training in real time, in order to better fit the needs of the industry at any given time.
Similarly, training and education curricula are developed in a manner that is career centered,and in keeping with the needs of a lifetime career, rather than narrowly suited to a single employer’s immediate needs.
The apprenticeship infrastructure of North America’s Building Trades Unions, which today encompasses over 1,900 training centers across the United States and Canada,and which is privately funded through collectively bargained contributions that exceed $1.3 billion per year, offers young men and women the chance to work and further their education, without the burden of student loans.
No other sector of the North American construction industry operates such a comprehensive and successful training approach; and no other industry in North America has a comparable system in place.
“CII (the Construction Industry Institute) established the Construction Industry Craft Training Research Team to examine construction craft training. The team concludes that each dollar invested in craft training can yield $1.30 to $3.00 in benefits. The benefits accrue in the form of increased productivity and reductions in turnover, absenteeism, rework, and other areas.”
– Construction Industry Craft Training in the United States and Canada,” Construction Industry Institute, University of Texas, Research Summary 231-1, August 2000