Iowa celebrates National Apprenticeship Week with record number of apprentices


Iowa is celebrating National Apprenticeship Week with the highest number of Iowans taking part in apprenticeships ever. New data from the U.S. Department of Labor/Office of Apprenticeship recently revealed Iowa reached a record level of 9,731 active apprentices in fiscal year 2022 and created the most new programs in the country.

Iowa’s leadership and increased investment in Registered Apprenticeship programs sparked an ongoing expansion into high-demand fields, including recent new apprenticeships in health care, education, and 25 non-traditional occupations. In FY 2022, Iowa registered 5,402 new apprentices and 163 new programs.

National Apprenticeship Week, taking place from Nov. 14-20, is a nationwide celebration of the success and value of Registered Apprenticeship programs. 

Iowa Workforce Development and its partners are highlighting the roles of high school students, adults, educators and employers who are supporting increased growth and access to more career opportunities.

Iowa Workforce Development Director Beth Townsend said the increase in apprenticeship programs shows the “need for new and innovative training programs,” especially after COVID-19.

“Registered Apprenticeships provide Iowans with a good living while they increase their skillset, and they often promote retention as newly skilled workers predominately stay with the employer that trained them,” she said.

Iowa’s focus on registered programs drives demand for building the state’s labor pool, benefiting job seekers and employers. The earn-and-learn model allows apprentices to earn wages from Day 1, learn from a skilled professional, and obtain a valuable credential upon program completion — typically leading to a good paying job. Iowa has committed more than $50 million this year to support existing and new Registered Apprenticeship programs. 

To commemorate the state’s success, Gov. Kim Reynolds released a statewide proclamation and video message

“Iowa is a national leader in creating Registered Apprenticeship programs. I’m proud to support this effort, and I’m committed to growing apprenticeship programs even further and across a wider array of industries,” said Gov. Reynolds. “Apprenticeship programs also offer long-term solutions for some of our most pressing workforce issues.”