Northern Virginia/DC Area Selected as One of Country’s Five Apprenticeship Innovation Districts; Four-Year Program Kicked Off During National Apprenticeship Week
During National Apprenticeship Week, BuildWithin announced that the Washington metro area was chosen to be an Apprenticeship Innovation District.
The announcement took place on Wednesday at the WEBUILD Summit, at the CTA Innovation House, and honored the region's collaborative efforts to support the expansion of apprenticeships.
Establishing Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia as an Apprenticeship Innovation District is part of BuildWithin’s charge as the recipient of a $7.9 million Apprenticeship Building America grant from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The program was created to strengthen, modernize, expand, and diversify DOL’s Registered Apprenticeship Program to enable more workers to find reliable pathways to the middle class. One of the primary goals for Northern Virginia and D.C. as an Apprenticeship Innovation District is to make it easier for employers to start and run successful apprenticeship programs. Other goals include the expansion of existing apprenticeship programs in the area and the growth of new talent starting technology apprenticeships.
“There are more than 130,000 open tech jobs in Northern Virginia alone. This hub will build upon the current efforts to make it easier for employers to start apprenticeship programs,” said Ximena Hartsock, co-founder of BuildWithin and former founder of Phone2Action.
“Being a collaborative partner with the regional hub will provide DC residents with new career opportunities. Local businesses will have more options to recruit talent and build upon existing relationships within the community,” said Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes, Director of the DC Department of Employment Services. “The Bowser Administration believes in opening doors for employers and job seekers alike, and this partnership forges a healthy economic cycle for the District.”
Northern Virginia/D.C. was selected in large part because of its ecosystem of partners, all of whom share the common objective of creating and expanding job opportunities through apprenticeship programs.
“Implementing apprenticeship programs is paramount both for employers and job seekers, and it would be extremely difficult without approved intermediaries lessening the burden on employers,” said Jim Chung, Associate Vice President for Research, Innovation and Entrepreneurship at George Washington University. “Companies who implement apprenticeship programs will benefit from an employee who can be productive from day one, and many workers who feel unfulfilled or in dead-end jobs can take advantage of a life-changing opportunity.”
BuildWithin is a software platform that enables employers to create, manage and expand apprenticeship programs, accelerating the productivity of new workers. BuildWithin is dedicated to upskilling today’s workforce. It is backed by Dundee Venture Capital and Black Capital. For more information visit www.buildwithin.com.