FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 13, 2017
Media Contact: Martha Parham, Ed.D.
Sr. Vice President, Public Relations
Phone: (202) 728-0200 ext. 209
Leader of Community College Association Appointed to Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion
Washington, DC— Members of the federal Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion will gather at the U.S. Department of Labor today—the first day of National Apprenticeship Week—for their first meeting. At the table will be Walter G. Bumphus, president and CEO of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC).
The mission of the Task Force, chaired by U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta, is to identify strategies and proposals to promote apprenticeships, especially in sectors where apprenticeship programs are insufficient. Bumphus will serve with experts from business, trade and industry groups, educational institutions and labor unions, working to address the nation’s skills gaps. The Task Force will submit a report to President Donald Trump detailing the strategies and proposals. Education Department Secretary Betsy DeVos and Commerce Department Secretary Wilbur Ross are serving as vice chairs.
The nation’s community colleges have long worked with employers in their communities to support apprenticeship programs, which allow students to simultaneously earn wages and valuable skills.
“I am honored to serve on behalf of the nation’s community colleges,” Bumphus said. “As a leader in workforce education, community colleges play a pivotal role in the development of a strong pipeline of qualified workers. The skills they learn at community college prepare them for high-wage jobs in competitive fields. Community colleges provide needed skills education in partnership with businesses and are well positioned to become the provider of choice for apprenticeship and workforce development programs. Strengthening the programs and services that help students find jobs and jobs find students is a win-win for the nation.”
Growing apprenticeships has been a priority for the White House. Earlier this year, President Trump issued an Executive Order Expanding Apprenticeships in America. The executive order called on Acosta to establish the Task Force.
“Expanding apprenticeships will help Americans learn the skills they need to fill jobs that are open right now and in the future. I am pleased to see business leaders, unions, educational institutions, and industry groups come together to help the American worker,” Secretary Acosta said in a release from the Labor Department. “The members of the Task Force on Apprenticeship Expansion will provide varied perspectives that will help guide the Administration’s strategy on growing apprenticeship programs nationwide. I am grateful for their participation in this important effort.”
For a full list of Task Force participants, click here.
About the American Association of Community Colleges
As the voice of the nation’s community colleges, the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), delivers educational and economic opportunity for 12 million diverse students in search of the American Dream. Uniquely dedicated to access and success for all students, AACC’s nearly 1,200 member colleges provide an on-ramp to degree attainment, skilled careers and family-supporting wages. Located in Washington, D.C., AACC advocates for these not-for-profit, public-serving institutions to ensure they have the resources and support they need to deliver on the mission of increasing economic mobility for all.