First veterans registered apprenticeship program launched in Alabama

First veterans registered apprenticeship program launched in Alabama

By CAROLINE BECK, Alabama Daily News

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The Alabama Office of Apprenticeship and Redstone Arsenal have partnered to provide the first registered apprenticeship program for veterans in the state.

“The (Alabama Office of Apprenticeship) is very happy to be able to ensure our veterans get every possible benefit from registered apprenticeship programs,” office director Josh Laney said in a press release. “The program we were able to build with U.S. Army (Test, Measurement and Diagnostic Equipment) Activity at Redstone is a great example of the kind of incentives and supports available to get the expertise and dedication of veterans into the civilian workforce.”

The program will enable veterans to learn highly specialized skills while getting paid, receive a monthly housing allowance and have a guaranteed job placement with advancement opportunities.

Employers will also benefit from the program by getting to hire veterans with proven track records of dedication and discipline and eventually develop a pipeline of skilled employees, the press release said.

Gary Davenport, of U.S. Army TMDE Activity at Redstone Arsenal, and James Thompson at the Veterans Affairs State Approving Agency, worked with the AOA to create the program.

“By working with the AOA, training providers and employers who build registered apprenticeship programs become automatically eligible for approval by the State Approving Agency for veteran’s programs,” Laney said. “This connects apprentices to a wide range of supports and brings the maximum value to employers. We look forward to many more successful connections in the years to come.”

The AOA was created in 2019 through legislation from Sen. Arthur Orr, R-Decatur, to help improve Alabama’s workforce and reach Gov. Kay Ivey’s goal of 500,000 new workers with degrees, certificates, and credentials by 2025.

Companies interested in becoming more veteran friendlier or in other apprenticeship programs can visit www.alapprentice.org for more information.