FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IR # 96-16
Wednesday, May 16, 1996
Riverside -- Riverside County high school students will be the first
in California to benefit from a new pilot program designed to fast track
students into careers in trades and industry, announced Lloyd W. Aubry Jr.,
director of the California Department of Industrial Relations.
Pilot Riverside Program to Boost Apprenticeship Across State
The Department of Industrial Relations, in cooperation with the Riverside
County Office of Education and its own Division of Apprenticeship Standards,
will kick off a unique program in Riverside today that will ultimately bring
apprenticeship programs into dozens of the state's high schools. With today's
signing of a memorandum of understanding between the school district, the
community college and the Department of Industrial Relations, Riverside
County becomes the first School-to-Apprenticeship site in California. The
apprenticeship program here will focus on the culinary industry.
Called Schools to Career/Apprenticeships Program, the plan will provide
students with valuable knowledge about careers that await them in California
and allow them early entry into career paths with formalized training and
education. With the average age of apprentices statewide currently at 28
years, high school and community college students who successfully participate
in this program can expect to develop the skills that will make them eligible
for higher paying journey-level jobs at a much earlier age.
"This is a rare opportunity for our young people to have access to
career paths that were never open before," Director Aubry said. "What
we can do with this joint effort between our Division of Apprenticeship
Standards and dozens of schools is to open doors into several areas for
these students. This goal is now within reach here in Riverside as a result
of the hard work and dedicated efforts from our partners."
The pilot program is a by-product of Gov. Pete Wilson's School-to-Career
program developed by his task force last year. It will focus on building
a hospitality career path for students from ninth-grade through completion
of the career path. While in high school, students start the program on
a part-time basis. Once finished with school they will move into their full-time
Career path completion includes one or more of the following: Successful
completion of the apprenticeship program, completion of an Associate of
Arts degree and/or certificate from the community college, and/or completion
of a four-year college or university degree.
"The pilot program is the result of an eight-month planning schedule
by the Division of Apprenticeship," Aubry said. "The involvement
of the Riverside County education system was launched nearly four months
ago. One of the main focuses for the Riverside involvement was that the
district houses an estimated 5 percent of the state's registered students.
The district has promised that its strong employer linkage is a surefire
avenue to the program's success."
Though there are no plans for any direct outlay of state funding of the
program, Division of Apprenticeship Standards will provide technical assistance
to the Riverside County superintendent of schools and the Riverside Community
College District to ensure the successful completion of students involved
in the program.
A second ceremony to launch a Schools to Career/Apprenticeships Program,
is scheduled in Salinas/Monterey on May 22. Later events will be launched
in Auburn, Torrance, Stockton, Redding and Milpitas. The apprenticeship
programs will concentrate on the automotive repair, health care, and manufacturing