President Donald Trump on Thursday signed an executive order to streamline and expand industry apprenticeship programs, similar to the one created earlier this year for the restaurant industry.
Trump’s directive calls for shifting apprenticeship program certification from the U.S. Department of Labor to industry groups, which would have agency oversight. The order also doubles apprenticeship grant funding to $200 million by transferring allocations from existing job-training programs.
The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and the American Hotel & Lodging Association on Feb. 21 signed a $1.8 million contract with the U.S. Department of Labor to launch the national Hospitality Sector Registered Apprenticeship project. It is seeking more than 450 apprentices in its inaugural year.
The NRAEF project will place workers in paid apprenticeships focused on management-level positions across the hospitality and foodservice industries.
Foodservice partners so far include Chipotle Mexican Grill, Firehouse Subs, Golden Corral, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Sodexo and White Castle. Hotel partners span DoubleTree, Embassy Suites, Hilton, Waldorf Astoria and Wyndam.
“We are excited about working with the administration to help create more job and career opportunities in the restaurant, foodservice and hospitality industry through apprenticeship,” said Rob Gifford, the NRAEF’s executive vice president, in a statement.
“The foundation has already begun working with the industry to develop and implement an apprenticeship program that provides the skills and training needed for career advancement across multiple management positions,” he said.
Dawn Sweeney, National Restaurant Association CEO and president, added that apprenticeship programs provide affordable education and job training for hospitality management.
“With today’s executive order,” she said in a statement, “we will have even more opportunities to help employees in the hospitality industry move up the ladder for fulfilling and rewarding careers.”
The NRA says the U.S. foodservice industry employs more than 14.7 million people.
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