Spokane and Fairchild Air Force Base Direct2Apprenticeship Event
Apprenticeship & Nontraditional Employment for Women (ANEW) in partnership with Camo2Commerce, Washington State of Veteran Affairs, and Spokane Community College conducted its first Direct2Apprenticeship event in Spokane. This event focuses on informing service members, currently transitioning and veterans, on the career opportunities through apprenticeship. The event served as both an information session and a job fair. The event included industry speakers talking about apprenticeship opportunities in their fields as well as information on how the GI Bill® works with apprenticeships. The industries ranged from construction to aerospace manufacturing to information technology. After the information session concluded the networking began. Each service members was provided the opportunity to talk to over 15 different organizations representing various industries.
Other information included GI Bill® usage. “Many service members are not aware that they can utilize their GI Bill® for apprenticeships. If the service member chooses to use their Post 9/11 GI Bill® it will pay 100% of whatever benefit they were allocated when they transitioned for the first 6 months/1000 hours. Every 6months/1000 hours worked after the GI Bill® will decrease by 20%. Apprenticeships are an amazing opportunity that service members are passing up because they don’t realize they are living wage jobs. The GI Bill® is structured to help offset any decrease in pay as service member transitions into civilian careers” stated Rachel Roberts from the Washington State department of Veteran Affairs.
Apprenticeships are a current focus for the Department of Labor, with the goal of increasing apprenticeship opportunities from the current one million positions to five million over the next five years. Apprenticeships are traditionally found in the construction industry but can also be found in aerospace manufacturing, information technology, safety, cosmetology, and culinary. Other industries looking at adopting the apprenticeship model include banking, claims, nursing, clean energy, human resources, and more.
More information on Washington State registered apprenticeships go to http://www.lni.wa.gov/TradesLicensing/Apprenticeship/. Other resources include the WDVA resource guide at http://wacareerpaths.com/apprenticeships/ and information on the GI Bill® can be found at https://www.vets.gov/gi-bill-comparison-tool/.