Workforce Stakeholders Share Strategies

Jim Reid (center), Machinists’ Director of Apprenticeship, Safety and Health, and Rick Inclima (right), Director of Safety for the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees, at DOL Transportation Accelerator conference. June Taylor of Ryder Systems is on the left.

DOL’s first national Apprenticeship Accelerator conference brought together more than 50 transportation stakeholders in Greenville, SC on May 10. Their shared goal: implementing effective strategies for expanding apprenticeship in the transportation and logistics industry.

John Ladd, Administrator of US DOL’s Office of Apprenticeship, opened the conference by tracking initial progress toward the goal of doubling the number of apprentices in America.  The norm in other advanced countries, he said, is integrating school-based and work-based learning so that everyone can have effective education and training beyond secondary school to prepare them for quality careers. Up to now in the US, the majority who enter the workforce without a college degree have had only limited access to apprenticeships that combine classroom and on-the-job learning.

Brian J. Turner, the Center’s founding director, emphasized the urgent need for more apprenticeship training across all transportation sectors. Standards-based apprenticeships in transportation, he said, can meet the industry’s growing needs for skilled workers while providing career pathways for young people who may not be headed straight to 4-year colleges.