WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor announced today that nine more organizations have been recognized as Standards Recognition Entities (SRE) overseeing the development of high-quality Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs (IRAP).

SREs are third-party industry and workforce leaders that will evaluate and recognize high-quality IRAPs consistent with the Department’s standards. Upon recognition, SREs can immediately begin to work with employers and other entities to establish, recognize, and monitor high-quality IRAPs that provide apprentices with industry-recognized credentials.

As part of today’s announcement, U.S. Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia met with the Arizona Insurance Institute, one of the new SREs, and their executive board members to discuss how IRAPs are increasing apprenticeship accessibility in new or underrepresented industries. The board, which consists of leaders in the financial industry such as The Hartford, Liberty Mutual, Nautilus Insurance Group, Legacy Insurance, and Farm Bureau, will help oversee the IRAPs they recognize.

“Organizations across the country have become SREs to recognize IRAPs in more than 200 occupations,” said Secretary Scalia. “The quick growth in the number of SREs and recognized IRAPs demonstrates the demand for this industry-led, market-driven approach to apprenticeships and workforce development. The Department of Labor will continue to work with private sector leaders, in addition to the public sector, to help American workers gain the skills they need for prosperous careers.”

With these additions to the initial cohort of SREs announced in September 2020, the Department now has 27 SREs representing a diverse array of organizations – including accreditation bodies, community colleges, employers, industry associations, state agencies, and workforce development agencies – equipped to oversee IRAP development.

To date, the Department has approved SREs to recognize IRAPs nationally or statewide in 20 industries, with many representing sectors where apprenticeship opportunities are not widespread. The SREs announced today will serve a diverse group of our nation’s workforce by recognizing high-quality IRAPs in industries such as finance and insurance, healthcare and social assistance, manufacturing, and professional, scientific, and technical services.

The nine organizations newly recognized as SREs are as follows:

Arizona Insurance Institute;
Area Community Services Employment and Training Council (ASCET) – West Michigan Works!;
Center for Business Acceleration;
Commonwealth of Kentucky Department for Workforce Investment;
Custom Training Solutions, a division of Northwest State Community College;
Institute for American Apprenticeship at Vermont Healthcare & Information Technology Education Center;
National Urban League;
Network Partners (Network Packaging Group LLC); and
New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program

“Thanks to these Standards Recognition Entities, American workers will have more options to obtain workplace-relevant training that result in an industry-recognized credential in new and growing industries, all while getting paid for their work,” said Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training John Pallasch. “Apprenticeships are just one tool to help hard-working Americans earn a living, and with the exciting announcement of entities recognizing individual Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs, the apprenticeship model is now more accessible to Americans of all backgrounds.” 

Today’s announcement comes days after the American Nurses Credentialing Center announced the recognition of 126 IRAPs across their accredited healthcare industry programs. Since Sept. 23, 2020, SRE’s have recognized 131 IRAPs, which will serve to complement the successful Registered Apprenticeship program and quickly drive flexible, innovative ways to expand apprenticeship.

Learn more about the SREs announced today. Entities interested in seeking the Department’s recognition as an SRE may submit an application online. The Department will review applications quarterly. For consideration in the next review cycle, submit applications by 11:59 p.m. EDT on March 31, 2021.

For more information, please visit www.apprenticeship.gov.

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *