WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Representatives Abigail Spanberger (VA-07) and Joaquin Castro (TX-20) reintroduced legislation to support youth apprenticeship programs in Central Virginia and across the country.
The Strengthening Our Youth Apprenticeships Act would create a new interagency apprenticeship agreement between the U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Education. Through this collaboration, both departments would share publicly available guidance and best practices to support youth apprenticeship programs in both secondary and postsecondary education institutions.
“Across Virginia, local apprenticeships provide opportunities for the next generation to learn the skills necessary to secure high-skilled jobs and stay competitive in a global economy. As we work toward our long-term economic recovery, we need to make sure high school and college students are able to access these programs,” said Spanberger. “Our federal agencies should work together toward achieving this goal, and our bipartisan legislation builds much-needed collaboration between the Department of Labor and the Department of Education. I look forward to building stronger, sustained relationships between community colleges, high schools, and local businesses.”
“Apprenticeships are an important path for young people to learn new skills and start a potential career, and they deserve the opportunity to gain college credit at the same time. The Strengthening Our Youth Apprenticeships Act will help build a strong infrastructure of opportunity in America for the next generation to reach their dreams,” said Castro. “A strong economy starts with a strong workforce — that’s why it’s critical for the Department of Labor and Education to work together to strengthen apprenticeships and for Congress to expand these programs to more young people.”
Additionally, the bill would fund a necessary expansion of recognized apprenticeship programs — including partnerships with community colleges and local businesses.
The Strengthening Our Youth Apprenticeships Act is endorsed by New America, Advance Career Technical Education, and the Association for Career and Technical Education.
Click here to read the full bill text.