WASHINGTON, DC – As part of National Apprenticeship Week activities, the U.S. Department of Labor today hosted over 200 stakeholders from around the country at the National Summit on Women in Apprenticeship at the Department’s headquarters in Washington D.C.
Sponsored by the Department’s Women’s Bureau, the summit – which brought together apprenticeship sponsors, employers, educational institutions, foundations, labor unions, policymakers, researchers, trade and industry groups, women and girls’ advocacy groups and workforce agencies – explored the challenges and emerging opportunities in recruiting and retaining women in apprenticeship programs. They also outlined some best practices to help them succeed in apprenticeship and non-traditional careers.
“We are committed to supporting and looking for new ways to expand apprenticeships for women to earn a living while learning the skills they need to succeed in their careers,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia. “As we celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, it is important to highlight the ways apprenticeships can give women new opportunities across a range of industries.”
“As our economy continues to grow, expanding women’s access to apprenticeship opportunities will make our workforce even stronger,” said Women’s Bureau Director, Dr. Laurie Todd-Smith. “Today’s Summit on Women in Apprenticeships is a great opportunity for women from around the country to discuss the ways in which we can all help more women take advantage of apprenticeship opportunities.”
The summit’s agenda included a keynote address by Susan Crystal-Mansour, Vice President of Program Impact at the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, as well as a distinguished set of panelists: Traci Britton of CVS Health, Nancy Houle of Minuteman Technical Institute, Chris Magyar of Techtonic, Cierra Mitchell of the Department’s Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and Lauren Sugerman of Chicago Women in Trades.
The summit marks the latest effort by the Department to expand apprenticeship opportunities for women. Over the past two years, the Women’s Bureau and ETA have awarded nearly $2.9 million in grants to organizations to help recruit, train, and retain more women in quality pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs. The Women in Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Occupations (WANTO) grants will help women pursue careers in manufacturing, infrastructure, cybersecurity, health care, and other industries. Learn more about WANTO grants.