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ICYMI: National apprenticeship week highlights company-based education options

National apprenticeship week highlights company-based education options

North Carolina is home to over 500 apprenticeship programs. For National Apprenticeship Week, Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), chairwoman of the Committee on Education and the Workforce, spoke exclusively with Kari Travis of the Carolina Journal about the importance of apprenticeships, and how these programs make a difference in the lives of young adults who value gaining hands-on experience.

Here are some of the highlights of what Chairwoman Foxx discussed:

“Traditional college education” is a thing of the past, said U.S. Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-5th District. Foxx, who holds several degrees — including a doctorate in teaching and higher education — served as president of Mayland Community College from 1987 to 1994.

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Apprenticeships were the original “higher education,” she said. But over the past several decades, college degrees have come to define success.

We’ve got to change that perspective, she said.

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“I believe that we’ve said to people, ‘If you’re in the 70 percent or more of people in this country who don’t have a college degree, then you’re not as worthy.’”

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“Most apprentices who graduate here end up as top students in college because they’ve been exposed to the technologies all the time.”

“The most important thing is they will never be late. They will do exactly as they say. They will be reliable — because this is how business works."

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“Every college is a vocational college, because the end result, people hope, is a job. If we start thinking about it that way, then we are not dividing people, or stigmatizing. We need our plumbers, electricians, and nurses. All of those people need to be honored, because we can’t work without them.”

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To read the full conversation with the Carolina Journal, click here.

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