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Kicking Off the Fifth Annual National Apprenticeship Week

Apprentices in a laboratory look into a microscope

The fifth annual National Apprenticeship Week kicks off on Monday to celebrate apprenticeship and promote its advantages in matching the skills that job creators need with the high-paying careers that job seekers want.

Over the past four years, stakeholders have hosted more than 3,000 events with more than 300,000 attendees in all 50 states. This year, NAW is primed to have its biggest year yet.

Apprenticeship Builds Careers

Apprenticeship is an industry-driven, high-quality career pathway. Employers develop and prepare their future workforce, while apprentices develop in-demand job skills through paid work experience with on-the-job training, classroom instruction, and a portable, nationally-recognized credential. After completing an apprenticeship, the average starting wage for an apprentice is $70,000 (which is higher than the starting wage for four-year college graduates). Growing and expanding apprenticeship is a top priority for the U.S. Department of Labor, which is why we continue to invest in programs and initiatives that build and diversify apprenticeship programs. Since the start of 2017, more than 600,000 new apprentices have been hired across the country.

How You Can Get Involved

Visit to see how others are putting the spotlight on apprenticeship and check out our event and proclamation resources for tools to help plan and promote events. There are many ways to participate: business open houses, skills competitions, community forums, apprentice graduations, high school or college career fairs, apprenticeship signing days, and industry roundtable events.

A number of apprenticeship programs have already gotten involved in National Apprenticeship Week by hosting events to showcase their programs and facilities, and introducing their apprenticeship programs to career seekers in their communities.

We encourage you to spread the word about NAW by sharing information about it and encouraging others to get involved. Share what you’re doing with the #NAW2019 hashtag on social media for a chance to be featured on DOL's social channels.

National Apprenticeship Week runs through November 17. To learn more, please visit or email

Charles Drummond IV is a Senior Policy Advisor working to grow apprenticeship in the Employment and Training Administration.

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