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Tech college system gets $5M apprenticeship grant

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Staff Report
Published Sept. 10, 2015

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration has given the S.C. Technical College System a $5 million grant to expand apprenticeships in the state. This grant is part of the American Apprenticeship Initiative. Apprenticeship Carolina has 760 registered apprenticeship programs and 13,411 total apprentices, up from 90 and 777 in 2007 when it started.

The state technical college system is among 11 programs nationally that received $5 million, the largest amount among a total of $175 million awarded to 46 applicants. The winning grantees have pledged to train and hire more than 34,000 new apprentices in industries including health care, information technology and advanced manufacturing over the next five years.

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The state program has committed that the grant will benefit 1,000 workers, including 750 new hires and 250 incumbent apprentices in manufacturing and professional and information services. Another goal is to increase access to postsecondary training and credentials for veterans, minorities and women.

Companies will be able to apply for grants to offset training costs associated with their respective apprenticeship programs. Applications will be granted on a first-come, first-served basis. The system’s 16 colleges will provide job-related education for the programs connected with the grant.

S.C. Technical College System President Jimmie Williamson said the system and program are “dedicated to increasing the awareness and use of registered apprenticeships in South Carolina. We know from experience that apprenticeships can go a long way to bridging the skills gap that so many companies across our state face.”

The state offers a $1,000 annual tax credit for each registered apprenticeship. A registered program also provides incremental wage increases.

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