IR # 96-41
Thursday, October 17, 1996

Rick Rice
Troy Swauger
(415) 972-8835

Area Students Tune-up Skills with New Apprenticeship Program

AUBURN --The California Department of Industrial Relations, in a coordinated effort with the 49er Regional Occupational Program, Placer and Nevada county educators and business leaders, are formally launching a program making apprenticeship opportunities available to more than 2,000 local students, announced DIR Director Lloyd W. Aubry Jr.

Under an agreement signed today, the 49er ROP's nationally recognized automotive repair program will receive accredited apprenticeship status from the California Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS). The agreement establishes a framework for students to receive specifically targeted curriculum and paid part-time apprenticeship training in the automotive repair industry.

"This provides a unique opportunity for young people to gain paid experience that will lead to solid careers," Aubry said. "Once in place, this program will offer businesses a highly skilled workforce that will contribute to the local economy and increase the competitiveness of their employers."

The School-to-Career/Apprenticeship Program is the result of Governor Wilson's commitment to find opportunities for young people and to create a comprehensive system to help students acquire the knowledge, skills and abilities needed to make an effective transition from school to employment. In 1994, the Governor issued an executive order creating the School-to-Career Task Force. As a result, DAS, through its School-to-Career/Apprenticeship Program, has established seven pilots throughout the state providing a variety of career choices including health care, culinary arts, precision metal forming, computer-aided design and parts supply management.

The 49er ROP program will coordinate efforts with five area school districts and more than 35 businesses. It will focus on building work skills and experience 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 can move into a full-time apprenticeship program with an already established employer. If a student chooses to continue his or her education at community college a part-time status remains.

Five districts, including Roseville Joint High School, Placer High School, Western Placer Unified, Nevada Union and Rocklin Unified, will participate through the 49er ROP.

For participating students, career path completion includes one or more of the following: Successful conclusion of the apprenticeship program through high school, completion of an Associate of Arts degree and/or certificate from a community college, and/or completion of a four-year college or university degree.

The Division of Apprenticeship Standards will provide technical assistance to the 49er ROP, a consortium of business interests and educators from the area, to ensure the successful completion of the students involved in the program. Other pilot program locations include Redding, Stockton, Salinas, Milpitas, Torrance and Riverside.


Editors Note: A memorandum of understanding, formally establishing this program, will be signed at 3:30 p.m. today at the Placer High School Automotive Shop, located at College Way and High Street in Auburn.