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Hatch lauds president's executive order to expand apprenticeships


President Donald Trump said Tuesday that the nation needs a stronger system of apprenticeship to match workers with millions of open jobs.

The president followed the meeting by signing an executive order created to increase the number of apprenticeship programs.

On Twitter Thursday, Chris Lu, Former Deputy Labor Secretary under Obama, said Trump's executive order "is simply a funding shift from other training programs".

Trump will issue a directive Wednesday meant to boost apprenticeships by expanding industry-certified programs, according to people familiar with the matter.

The White House said Trump's push is aimed at training workers with specific skills for particular jobs that employers say they can't fill at a time of historically low unemployment.

It shall be the policy of the Federal Government to provide more affordable pathways to secure, high-paying jobs by promoting apprenticeships and effective workforce development programs, while easing the regulatory burden on such programs and reducing or eliminating taxpayer support for ineffective workforce development programs. Trump's apprenticeship rollout, he said Thursday, will "place students into great jobs without the crippling debt" that often comes with it.

Trump said the learn-and-earn arrangements are going to be "a big, big factor" in his effort to add jobs employers are having trouble filling. Fewer than 50,000 people including 11,104 in the military-completed their apprenticeships in 2016, according to Labor Department.

Walker has long touted Wisconsin's apprenticeship programs as a way to address workplace shortages.

"The Secretaries of Defense, Labor, and Education, and the Attorney General, shall, in consultation with each other and consistent with applicable law, promote apprenticeships and pre apprenticeships for America's high school students and Job Corps participants, for persons now or formerly incarcerated, for persons not now attending high school or an accredited post-secondary educational institution, and for members of America's armed services and veterans", the executive order stated.

Participants get on-the-job training while going to school, sometimes with companies footing the bill.

The apprenticeship expansion is being rolled out as part of what the White House has dubbed "workforce development week".

Trump also says at a round table conversation at Waukesha County Technical College in Wisconsin that he loves the "name Apprentice" - a reference to the reality television show he used to host.

The president's Executive Order does exactly that, and the restaurant industry looks forward to working with the administration and others in Washington on this important issue in the future.

He signed executive orders that loosen federal restrictions on job-training programs and encourage partnerships between business and colleges to train young workers for a vast array of jobs that employers struggle to fill.

Not many. Only about 500,000 people enrolled in registered apprenticeship programs in the USA, including an apprenticeship program run by the military.

Under the Obama administration, apprenticeships rose from approximately 350,000 in 2010 to its current level of a little over 500,000, according to the Department of Labor. And the American worker sees what's happening in MI and in OH and in a lot of places that we've had a huge impact on just in a short period of time that I've been here and this administration has been involved.

To improve upon that rate, a White House memorandum follows that point: "Substantial additional growth requires an increase in labor force participation, which requires helping those outside the labor force develop better job skills".

Governor Scott Walker said that President Trump's visit to Wisconsin highlights alternative education to fill the skills gap in manufacturing jobs.

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