CTE in the News: “Apprenticeships Could Help U.S. Workers Gain a Competitive Edge,” an Op-Ed in the Washington Post
May 16, 2013
in the News: “Apprenticeships Could Help U.S. Workers Gain a Competitive Edge,”
an Op-Ed in the Washington Post
Stuart Eizenstat, former chief White House domestic policy
advisor under President Jimmy Carter and undersecretary of commerce for
international trade in the Clinton Administration, joined with Robert Lerman, a
fellow at the Urban Institute, to pen an op-ed published in the Washington Post,
Could Help U.S. Workers Gain a Competitive Edge.” The op-ed examines the
value of apprenticeships and stresses that the United States needs more of
these vital workforce development programs.
The op-ed cites the manufacturing comeback, with U.S.
companies bringing operations and production back to the country as a result of
improved incentives for businesses and adding manufacturing jobs to the economy.
Eizenstat and Lerman point out that this revival of “goods-producing
industries….provide a great opportunity to increase middle-class wages, reduce
income inequality and expand social mobility.” However, there is a risk that
the United States will not seize this moment to expand and strengthen our
economy as the skills gap, which was to blame for 600,000 skilled labor jobs
going unfilled last year, threatens to spur job-creators to look elsewhere.
“The central answer to the mismatch between jobs and
employment is a 21st-century apprenticeship program, ” the op-ed reads. CTE
provides apprenticeship programs or similar work-shadowing, on-the-job training
that provides students with some form of credential in schools across the
country (see examples in our
Business and Industry resources page ) but these programs, like all CTE
programs, must be further scaled up and supported by robust funding through the
This op-ed makes a strong argument for CTE programs as we
head into advocacy for the FY 14 appropriations cycle. Quotes from experts,
particularly former elected and top officials, make great additions to your own
op-ed article in support of Perkins funding in your local paper or in your
letters, e-mails and calls to your Members of Congress.