Many industries are facing a shortage of qualified workers. It’s an old story. The skills companies seek are not always taught in school and traditional four-year degrees may not always equip graduates with the specific technical skills many fields require. Schools have difficulty reacting to today’s rapidly changing job market and this is now exacerbated by the overwhelming addition of Artificial Intelligence.

Last week we discussed the value of internships but today we look at Apprenticeships or, as I like to call them, internships on steroids. Apprenticeships provide focused training tailored to the specific needs of an industry or employer. This ensures a future workforce comprised of workers with the exact skills employers seek.

Internships and apprenticeships are both paths to gain experience in a field and narrow the skills gap, but they have some key differences:

  • Internships are typically shorter, lasting from a few months to a year, while apprenticeships are longer commitments, ranging from one to six years.
  • Internships tend to focus on giving students exposure to a work environment and helping them develop general work skills. Apprenticeships, on the other hand, are designed to teach participants specific skills and knowledge required for a particular trade or occupation.
  • Apprenticeships typically follow a more structured curriculum that combines classroom learning with on-the-job training. Internships may or may not have a formal structure.
  • Apprenticeships are typically paid positions, while internships may or may not be paid. Some internships offer college credit instead of a wage.

Apprenticeships benefit both companies and individuals. They equip companies with a skilled workforce, while offering individuals a debt-free path to a successful career in a skilled trade.

And here is the best news. Thanks to Apprenticeship Intermediary firms such as Long Island based Apprenticeship Connections & Consulting Corporation, internships are expanding outside the traditional trades.

You can now find internships in financial services, human resources, accounting, marketing, and technical sales and that list continues to grow.

Finding an Internship:

  • Government Resources: The U.S. Department of Labor offers an website specifically designed to connect job seekers with apprenticeship opportunities. You can search for apprenticeships by location and occupation and apply directly through the site
  • State and Local Programs: Many states and localities have their own apprenticeship programs. You can find information about these programs by contacting your state’s Department of Labor or workforce development agency.
  • Industry Associations: Industry associations often play a role in promoting and developing apprenticeship programs. These associations can be a good source of information about apprenticeship opportunities. Searching online for “[Industry Name] Association Apprenticeship” can be a good starting point.
  • Community Colleges and Trade Schools: Many community colleges and trade schools offer apprenticeship programs in conjunction with local employers. These institutions can provide training and guidance throughout the application process.
  • Direct Employer Contact: Some employers advertise apprenticeship opportunities on their company websites or job boards. You can also reach out to companies directly to inquire about apprenticeship programs.
  • Internship Intermediary Firms: Check out The CEO of Apprenticeship Connections, Michael Todisco, has done an amazing job helping companies build their own programs, as well as guiding candidates into apprenticeships.

Happy Hunting!

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