Department of Labor OKs Apprenticeships for Additive Manufacturing

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship has approved the first ever industry-vetted registered apprenticeship programs for additive manufacturing technicians, America Makes announced Thursday.

“The approval of the AM Technician Registered Apprenticeship by the Department of Labor is the accumulation of a great deal of work and learning, much of which were leveraged directly from the America Makes Workforce and Education Roadmap,” said Rob Gorham, America Makes executive director. “We are proud to have played an important role in this initiative to empower employers nationwide to develop and customize AM apprenticeships to create a much needed, highly skilled additive workforce.”

The development of the framework for the AM Technician Registered Apprenticeship was a key America Makes initiative through Apprenticeship Works—the National Advanced Manufacturing Apprenticeship Program. The program is a collaborative project between the Robert C. Byrd Institute, America Makes, the National Coalition of Advanced Technology Centers, Tooling U-SME and AST2, and supported by the DOL.

The Byrd Institute, a founding member of America Makes, leads Apprenticeship Works. Through Apprenticeship Works, the institute works with partners across the United States to expand apprenticeship opportunities in advanced manufacturing, making them more accessible and affordable for employers.

“The formal recognition by the DOL OA of the AM Technician Registered Apprenticeship is a big step forward for the AM industry at large,” said Josh Cramer, America Makes Workforce and Education Director. “The AM innovations are out there. What’s needed most is a skilled workforce to support the innovative work. With the AM Technician Apprenticeship framework now available, employers can combine on-the-job learning with related instruction in specific additive processes and technologies to produce qualified, highly-productive employees.”

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.