March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010
August 2010
September 2010 October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
January 2011
February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August 2011 September 2011 October 2011 November 2011 December 2011 January 2012 February 2012 March 2012 April 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012 August 2012 September 2012 October 2012 November 2012 December 2012 January 2013 February 2013 March 2013 April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013 August 2013 September 2013 October 2013 November 2013 December 2013 January 2014 February 2014 March 2014 April 2014 May 2014 June 2014 July 2014 August 2014 September 2014 October 2014 November 2014 December 2014 January 2015 February 2015 March 2015 April 2015 May 2015 June 2015 July 2015 August 2015 September 2015 October 2015 November 2015 December 2015 January 2016 February 2016 March 2016 April 2016 May 2016 June 2016 July 2016 August 2016 September 2016 October 2016 November 2016 December 2016 January 2017 February 2017 March 2017 April 2017 May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 January 2018 February 2018 March 2018 April 2018 May 2018 June 2018 July 2018 August 2018 September 2018 October 2018 November 2018 December 2018 January 2019 February 2019 March 2019 April 2019 May 2019 June 2019 July 2019 August 2019 September 2019 October 2019 November 2019 December 2019 January 2020 February 2020 March 2020 April 2020 May 2020 June 2020 July 2020 August 2020 September 2020 October 2020 November 2020 December 2020 January 2021 February 2021 March 2021 April 2021 May 2021 June 2021 July 2021 August 2021 September 2021 October 2021 November 2021 December 2021 January 2022 February 2022 March 2022 April 2022 May 2022 June 2022 July 2022 August 2022 September 2022 October 2022 November 2022 December 2022 January 2023 February 2023 March 2023 April 2023 May 2023 June 2023 July 2023 August 2023 September 2023 October 2023 November 2023 December 2023 January 2024 February 2024 March 2024 April 2024
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
News Every Day |

Illinois could lower unemployment with more apprenticeship programs

Two men wearing hard-hats, safety goggles and tool belts inspect a metal rafter.

Students learn to make metal rafters at the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters’ Apprentice and Training Program in Elk Grove Village in 2018.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

 If you’re looking for a job in Illinois, I’m sorry. It’s hard for you because Illinois is failing to do its job. The state hasn’t created enough of the right infrastructure to teach skills for jobs employers need.    

In December, Illinois’ 4.7% unemployment rate, the fourth highest in the nation, meant there were more than 304,000 people looking for a job. At the same time, there were an estimated 391,000 job openings as of November 2023. But if those 304,000 people had the right skills, they could fill some, if not most, of these 391,000 jobs.

Illinois needs to fix its “skills gap” problem. It can do that in part by prioritizing skills-based training and apprentice-type programs that get people the skills and training they need to have a career without a college degree. To get there, we must first discard the “college is best” model that’s not working. While college is a good choice for many students, it is not the right choice for many others.

Opinion bug

Opinion

In Chicago alone, there are 53,000 residents with at least a bachelor’s degree who live in poverty, according to our analysis of 2022 Census data. Research from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce shows only 31% of Americans actually need post-secondary education for their jobs. And earning those degrees comes at the cost of time, money and usually debt.  

The better way to prepare people for viable careers is to move to a work-based educational model that translates tangible skills into good, well-paying jobs. This “career-first” model prioritizes professions that are in high demand now and will continue to be in demand as the economy evolves.  

Apprenticeships are a proven work-based educational model. According to the Center for American Progress, apprentices earn higher wages, receive education while taking on little or no debt, and often find immediate full-time employment that pays well. A report from the Progressive Policy Institute showed individuals who complete an apprenticeship earn an average salary of $77,000, far above the $55,000 average national salary. 

One model of an effective apprenticeship program is just north of us. The Wisconsin Youth Apprenticeship Program combines academic (high school) and technical instruction with mentored, paid, hands-on learning. It requires 450 hours of work-based learning and two semesters of classroom instruction related to the field each year for up to two years. Self-reported data show nearly 75% of program graduates were offered continued employment upon completing the program.  

Illinois has some of the basic infrastructure for good apprenticeship programs. The state has career and technical education programs in select secondary schools, totaling 424 registered apprenticeship programs as of 2024.

The bad news is these programs are tiny. We only dedicate $34 million annually to secondary school apprenticeships, according to the Illinois Future of Work Task Force Report. Of the 611,732 students in Illinois secondary schools in 2022, only 22,713 were career concentrators.

Illinois needs to reallocate significant resources inside our public school system to increase the size and scope of these programs. For now, job seekers can rely on innovative apprenticeship programs inside private organizations.

For example, Curt’s Café’s structured work and life training program in Evanston has helped 550 students learn culinary techniques and marketable skills, while closing educational gaps, building confidence and getting job placement assistance. Chicago-based Monarch Thrift Shop is working to end youth homelessness and reduce recidivism by providing at-risk youth with both job and soft-skills training. And they’re innovating to make their programs better by including the acquisition of a nationally recognized certificate from the National Retail Foundation that shows the individual is prepared with the skills to work in retail, the top private sector employer in the country.  

Mayor Lori Lightfoot had the right idea in May 2023 when she launched the DiverseTech apprenticeship program. It seeks to train 25 apprentices in fields like cybersecurity and digital services. In 2023, the Illinois General Assembly amended the Illinois Works Jobs Program Act to include the Illinois Works Apprenticeship Initiative, which requires apprentices to perform 10% of total labor on public works projects estimated to cost more than $500 million.

At the federal level, in 2023 U.S. Rep Nikki Budzinski of Illinois introduced the Leveraging and Energizing America's Apprenticeship Program Act, which gives businesses a $1,500 tax break for every vocational school-trained apprentice they hire during their first three years of employment.

These types of programs are worth trying, evaluating and expanding if they work.

Joshua Bandoch, Ph.D., is head of policy at the Illinois Policy Institute.

The Sun-Times welcomes letters to the editor and op-eds. See our guidelines.

The views and opinions expressed by contributors are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Chicago Sun-Times or any of its affiliates. 

Couple who won Come Dine With Me posed as customs officers to steal drugs as part of scam

Nvidia employees are getting richer with a 'special Jensen grant' that boosts their stock awards by 25%

The Masters 2024: Rory McIlroy feels he can still win at Augusta National despite swing ‘feeling horrific’ in round two

Premier League icon beats big-earning poker pro to £42,000 pot as he keeps low profile at table in hoodie and sunglasses

Ria.city






Read also

Rohit first Indian to achieve this massive feat in T20 cricket

Taylor Swift Lived It Up at Coachella Next to Teresa Giudice

Just hours left to claim FREE Cadbury Dairy Milk bar – exact button to press to get it

News, articles, comments, with a minute-by-minute update, now on Today24.pro

News Every Day

The Masters 2024 prize money: How much does Green Jacket winner take home from Augusta National?

Today24.pro — latest news 24/7. You can add your news instantly now — here


News Every Day

Nvidia employees are getting richer with a 'special Jensen grant' that boosts their stock awards by 25%



Sports today


Новости тенниса
Андрей Рублёв

Теннисист Рублев со счетом 1:6 проиграл тренировочный сет Надалю в Барселоне



Спорт в России и мире
Москва

Более 30 студентов академии физкультуры осудили за дачу взяток профессору



All sports news today





Sports in Russia today

Москва

Более 30 студентов академии физкультуры осудили за дачу взяток профессору


Новости России

Game News

Необычную игру «Путь Мечика» (Slash Quest) выпустили на Android


Russian.city


Москва

"Предстоящая встреча Путина и Пашиняна может стать переломным моментом в российско-армянских отношениях": Михаил Александров


Губернаторы России
Сергей Собянин

Собянин: 17 москвичей стали абсолютными победителями школьной олимпиады


Шапки женские вязаные на Wildberries, 2024 — новый цвет от 392 руб. (модель 466)

Постпред Ульянов рассказал о причине обострения ситуации на Ближнем Востоке

"Вопреки глубоким разногласиям". США передали России данные по теракту в "Крокусе"

Иран впервые в истории напрямую напал на Израиль


Певица Наталья Которева презентовала новую песню «Ты - мой мужчина»

Жена бывшего Волочковой похвасталась фигурой на последних месяцах беременности

Оптимизация сайта. Seo оптимизация сайта. Поисковая оптимизация сайта.

Оззи Осборн «решил» поправить здоровье в Ставропольском крае


Теннисист Рублев со счетом 1:6 проиграл тренировочный сет Надалю в Барселоне

Казахстан разгромили в «Кубке Билли Джин Кинг»

Джокович признался, что отпраздновал победу в стиле Медведева

Джокович вышел в полуфинал турнира в Монте-Карло



5 ЛЕТ НА СТРАЖЕ ВЕРНОСТИ!

Шапки женские вязаные на Wildberries, 2024 — новый цвет от 392 руб. (модель 466)

Travel-эксперт Тариел Гажиенко: как сделать индивидуальный тур дешевле

Кредиты оказались чисто женскими // По делу о хищении средств Промсвязьбанка судят лишь предполагаемых исполнителей


Вырезанный из советского эфира клип Пугачевой выложили в Сеть

Стратегия «Газпрома»: точки роста спроса на газ

"Локомотив" и ЦСКА забили 6 мячей в рамках РПЛ

Фильм "Я шагаю по Москве" вышел на экраны 60 лет назад


Примадонна российской эстрады отмечает юбилей

Буйное предвкушение отдыха: самолет, летевший в Турцию, сел в Белграде

Кто и зачем покупает премиальную недвижимость в элитных жилых комплексах Москвы

Вылезшая из унитаза крыса напугала пожилую женщину в Москве



Путин в России и мире






Персональные новости Russian.city
Баста

Баста, Бузова, Тимати и другие: на VK Fest 2024 выступят 80 популярных артистов



News Every Day

The Masters 2024 prize money: How much does Green Jacket winner take home from Augusta National?




Friends of Today24

Музыкальные новости

Персональные новости