Apprenticeships in San Diego County offer median earnings in excess of $60,000 a year, experts say, but many slots go unfilled because workers don’t know about them.
To help raise public awareness, an East Region Apprenticeship Fair,
open to East County high school and college students and the general
public, is set for Friday, May 12, at the Grossmont College Main Quad.
The fair is open to high school students from 8-11:30 a.m., then to
everyone else from noon-3 p.m. The focus of the morning session is to
inform teens of apprenticeships as an option for training and education,
while the afternoon sessions will be geared to an adult audience.
Workshops will include “Overview of the Trades,” “Females in
Apprenticeships,” and “Work Readiness.”
Coordinated by the Grossmont Union High School District, Grossmont
Adult Education and the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District,
the free event is for those interested in learning about apprenticeship
opportunities in San Diego and Imperial counties.
Representatives from 18 apprenticeship programs – mostly from the
construction trades -- will provide information on on-the-job training
for high-demand careers. Among them are Associated Builders &
Contractors of San Diego, Inc. (ABC); Associated General Contractors
(AGC); General Dynamics; Technology Apprenticeship Program; San Diego
& Imperial Counties Bricklayers & Stone Masons JATC; Kitchens
for Good; Chefs de Cuisine of San Diego; and San Diego Cosmetology
The apprenticeship fair is an outgrowth of the high school district’s
College and Career Readiness (C&CR) initiative, a push to ensure
students are prepared for a postsecondary education, career training, or
the workforce once they graduate from high school.
Apprenticeships are work-based, earn-while-you-learn opportunities
that prepare workers for occupations in industries such as construction
to manufacturing and healthcare. Median annual earnings for apprentices
in San Diego County are $61,532, according to the California Department
of Apprenticeships, yet industry leaders like the East County Economic
Development Council have found in multiple studies that very few
individuals are aware of apprenticeships or how to enroll in one.
As part of a collaborative effort to ensure East County has a
well-prepared workforce, the high school and college districts have
joined on other initiatives such as the East County Alliance, a unique
partnership created in 2014 to provide East County youth with a smoother
path to college and careers.
In April, it was announced that Grossmont College will receive a
$410,000 state grant for an innovative outreach program preparing high
school students and adult learners in East County’s underserved
communities for apprenticeships. The centerpiece of the program is a
Pre-Apprentice Mobile (PAM) Lab that will serve as an outreach and
education vehicle at career fairs, high schools, and adult schools in an
effort to spread the word about apprenticeship opportunities and begin
preparing interested students to become apprentices.
“The apprenticeship fair and the PAM Lab will bring awareness to the
comprehensive nature of education offerings at Grossmont College,” said
Javier Ayala, dean of Career and Technical Education and Workforce
Development at Grossmont College.
For more information about the East Region Apprenticeship Fair, contact C&CR Work-based Learning Specialist Frank Luera at firstname.lastname@example.org
Free parking will be available in Lot 7 at Grossmont College.