More than 4,300 high school juniors and seniors are in line this upcoming school year to be trained as apprentices in real-world jobs, thanks to a big boost in state funding.
Gov. Scott Walker announced last week that a record $3.9 million will go to 33 consortiums across the state to help students get proper instruction and on-the-job training in their area of interest.
“Wisconsin’s nationally recognized Youth Apprenticeship program helps employers across the state address the skills gap, and remains a key talent development strategy,” Walker said in announcing the funding.
“Increased grant funding for the upcoming school year ensures more Wisconsin high school students will become youth apprentices and graduate with the high-demand job skills and industry certification required by our businesses,” the governor said.
The consortiums are made up of technical schools, employers, school districts, labor unions, chambers of commerce, registered apprenticeship programs and other organizations.
The one- and two-year programs allow students to go from work-based learning in school to apprenticeship training to the work force.
“Local consortiums are critical to the success of the Youth Apprenticeship program, helping develop valuable job skills for students, and a future pipeline of skilled talent for businesses,” said Department of Workforce Development Secretary Ray Allen.
The biggest grant totaling over $460,000 went to a consortium headed by CESA 6 in Oshkosh, for 515 students in the program.
The South Central Wisconsin consortium in Madison received almost $360,000 in funding for 399 students.