Frequently Asked Questions

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Top Questions

  • Apprenticeship is an industry-driven, high-quality career pathway where employers can develop and prepare their future workforce, and individuals can obtain paid work experience, classroom instruction, mentorship, and a portable credential. 

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  • The length of an apprenticeship program can vary depending on the employer, complexity of the occupation, industry, and the type of program.

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  • IRAPs are high-quality apprenticeship programs recognized by industry and/or workforce leaders known as SREs. IRAPs were designed to give the additional flexibility necessary to expand the apprenticeship model and to address the diverse workforce needs of different industries and occupations. A RAP is a proven model of apprenticeship that has been validated by the Department of Labor or State Apprenticeship Agency. RAPs are known for their structure, rigor, and quality and are designed for organizations interested in receiving the DOL or state seal of approval and funding opportunities made available by DOL. The U.S. Department of Labor has created a helpful side-by-side document comparing the two programs.

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  • Yes! Apprenticeship spans more than 1,000 occupations including careers in health care, cybersecurity, information technology, and energy. 

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  • Apprenticeship training is distinguished from other types of workplace training by several factors:

    (1) Apprenticeships are jobs! Apprentices earn wages from their employers during training; 

    (2) Apprenticeship programs provide on-the-job learning and job-related classroom training;

    (3) On-the-job learning is conducted in the work setting under the direction of a mentor(s); and  

    (4) Training results in an industry-recognized and portable credential. 

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  • In June 2017, an Executive Order on “Expanding Apprenticeships in America” contained several important tasks and requirements to help modernize America’s education systems and workforce development programs by expanding apprenticeships. You can find the Presidential Executive Order Expanding Apprenticeships in America on the White House website.

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  • The U.S. Department of Labor does not have an official definition of internship or externship. However, generally speaking, differences between internships and apprenticeships fall into in the following areas: Length of Time, Structure, Mentorship, Pay, Credentials, and College Credit.

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