San Jacinto College has been able to sustain and increase its relationships with its registered apprenticeship partners over time.
In terms of best practices, the following should be considered key elements for a college to work with successful Registered Apprenticeship Programs (RAP).
- Listen to the company needs.
Be a collaborative partner. Think of two people dancing. It takes practice and working together, but the most beautiful dancers are those who move as one. This is what colleges need to do with companies in developing Registered Apprenticeship Programs.
- Work with the company to determine what is the best model for them. This would include time, hybrid or a competency-based RAP.
- The college as the registered apprenticeship sponsor, can provide the related training instruction (RTI), and the employment/on-the-job-training (OJT).
- The company as the RA sponsor can work directly with the college using company employees who have been certified by the college as instructors. Classes are generally developed solely for the company but, if there are spaces available other students may register as well.
- The company as the RA sponsor and the college as the fiscal agent with the state RA program can have access to funding for program administration as well as equipment, supplies, and/or instruction. Equipment is owned by the college but can also be used for the RA instruction at the company.
- Follow-up. Stay in contact.
This must be done to practice for that perfect dance: partnership. For example, one of our partners had to suspend having apprentices for a couple of years, but recently they were able to return to the partnership and provide new RA programs. This is due mainly from our ability to stay in touch.
- Collaborate with partners on marketing the registered apprenticeship programs. Demonstrate the opportunity to the students and the industry partners.
- Talk about the benefits – funding, dependability, low turnover, and upskilling reskilling to meet workforce needs.
- During National Apprenticeship Week, recognize all registered apprentices on campus and design a program that highlights the companies with which you partner.
- Continue to look for grant funding that supports the registered apprenticeship programs. Examples include:
- Braided Funding
- Work with local and state leaders in the Department of Labor (DOL) and affiliated agencies to identify additional funding opportunities.
Because San Jacinto College is a Registered Apprenticeship Community College and because we partner with RA companies, we have been able to secure funding that provides tuition for registered apprentices, equipment for training, partial funding for the OJT, and in some cases student support services and financial assistance for registered apprentices along with training for the instructors.
Listening (College listening to company) + Communication (Company + College) + Planning (Company + College) + Marketing = Registered Apprentices/Employment