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New Executive Order Could Erode Quality of Apprenticeships

June 15, 2017

Contact: Allie Aguilera,, 202.734.6529

Trump Administration’s Apprenticeships Executive Order Could Threaten Program Quality & Millennials’ Efforts to Get New Skills

[WASHINGTON]- Today, President Trump signed an executive order relaxing the registration standards of Registered Apprenticeship programs as a part of the Administration’s push to strengthen America’s workforce. The order will reportedly allow third-party providers like corporations and unions to certify their training programs as Registered Apprenticeships, independent of the Department of Labor’s assessment of their quality. The order will also reportedly call for increased investment in apprenticeships by Congress.

Young Invincibles’ Government Affairs Director Reid Setzer stated, “While we appreciate the continued focus on apprenticeship spanning the previous administration to this one, the move to open up Registered Apprenticeship certification could strip back accountability and erode the program’s credibility if not combined with rigorous quality standards and protections for apprentices. The Registered Apprenticeship program provides workers with a nationally recognized credential, and it’s unclear as of yet how the third-party credentials will be held to standards that ensure they remain useful for employees once they leave that specific job. Additionally, allowing for a dramatic expansion of what qualifies as an apprenticeship with no uniform quality standards could allow for the proliferation of ineffective programs, and the Department of Labor, particularly when facing budget cuts, won’t be able to ensure oversight.

Finally, this announcement simply doesn’t match up with President Trump’s budget. While today’s order reportedly asks for an additional $100M for apprenticeships, the overall cuts to WIOA implementation, the Department of Labor, and career and technical education proposed in the President’s budget far outpace that request. Apprenticeships are valuable pathways to financial security and valuable credentials for our generation, but it’s essential those programs are of the highest quality.”