Construction PreApprenticeship Programs:
Results from a National Survey
Working Poor Families Project Meeting
Chicago, IL
June 11, 2009
1
Survey Respondents
• 260 ‘pre-apprenticeship’ programs responded
• From 40 states, DC and PR
• Most common org type among respondents was
non-profit/CBO followed by comm/tech/trade
college
• 80% of respondents reported working with
partners (biz/union reps, schools, gov’t agencies
and other non-profits)
• Wide range in age and size of programs
responding
2
Who Were We Trying to Reach?
• Anyone preparing/connecting individuals not
currently working in construction to construction
jobs
– Many respondents did not seem well connected to
apprenticeship system
– Penetration rate of apprenticeship programs unknown
(USDOL Office of Apprenticeship), but likely varies by
market segment and geographically
• We use ‘pre-apprenticeship’ as short-hand term,
but not all respondents would describe
themselves as pre-apprenticeship programs
3
Opportunities Targeted
• Programs connect individuals to a wide variety
of occupations—19+ occupations, carpenters,
laborers, electricians most commonly mentioned
by programs
• Target a range of market segments—~70%
target commercial and 50+% target residential;
less in industrial, heavy & hgwy, institutional
• Programs commonly report working with both
union and non-union companies
• Relatively few programs seem to be connecting
their participants to registered apprenticeships
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Union, non-union, both
Target of Placement Efforts
27%
Unions/union companies
Merit shops/non-union
companies
Both union and non-union
companies
10%
63%
5
Program Services
• Programs report providing a range of
introductory information, training, support and
placement services
• 88% of respondents reported providing training
services--vocational components offered at a
relatively high rate
• Support and placement services were offered at
a much lower rate than training services
• Some indication that “traditional workforce”
organizations more likely to provide supports
than union, industry or education institutions
6
Who offers construction programs?
Respondents by Organizational Type
2%
2%
2%
2%
Nonprofit/CBO, incl. faith-based
1%
Technical, trades, comm college or univ
3%
WIB
4%
Union
4%
Joint apprentice training fund, council, or program
State govt agency
6%
44%
Industry association
Local govt agency, incl. TANF, etc.
7%
School district, K-12 school
One-stop operator
7%
Housing authority
Other
18%
Construction business, contractor, developer
7
Participants Served
• Respondents reported a wide range of program
sizes -- with a median of 54 and average of 122
participants served
• Roughly half of respondents reported designing
services for individuals who might face barriers
in the industry
• About 3/4 indicate screening for ability level, but
only 1/3 indicate requiring a H.S. degree or GED
• Other screens used include drug use, drivers
license, legal status, reliable transportation,
physical aptitude, criminal records history
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Populations Served/Designed for
Populations Served and Populations Targeted
Low -income individuals
Ethnic, racial minorities
Women
Adults w ith limited or no w ork history
Ex-offenders
Youth
Dislocated w orkers
Immigrants,non-English speakers
0%
10%
20%
% Programs serving pop.
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
90%
% Programs designing services for Pop.
9
100%
Tailored Programs vs.
Designed for a General Population
• Tailored offer more robust set of supports,
although curriculum content areas similar
• Tailored less likely to connect to union or
registered apprenticeship
• Tailored more likely to accept individuals
with low skill levels
• Tailored more likely to report finance,
industry, policy and operational challenges,
for a variety of potential reasons
10
Targeted vs. Gen’l Pop Programs
Support Services Offered
Work expenses, e.g., supplies, fees, testing, dues
Tuition, training expenses
Transportation
Mentoring
Mental health
Legal assistance
Housing
Health insurance
Drug testing
Driver license obtainment/driving record remediation
Child support arrears
Child care
Case management
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90 100
% programs reporting
Programs Targeting Adults w / Ltd Work History
Programs Serving Gen'l Pop
11
Green Program Elements
• 120 respondents answered a question asking
about green program elements
• Most common activity included in answer was
weatherization, cited by 42 respondents
• 21 respondents noted that they have curriculum
in development
• Renewable energy: 21 solar; 6 wind; 1
geothermal
• Many noted ‘green’ is a long-standing aspect of
construction work -- from proper insulation to
low-flow water to recycling building materials
12
Outcomes Reported
• Programs report reasonably high training
completion rates
• Job placement is a challenge
• Placement in registered apprenticeship
programs is low; some programs do not
work with registered apprenticeship
• Data regarding outcomes is likely of
uneven quality across programs
• Post-program completion services are
limited
13
Training Completion
Trainee Outcomes Reported
60%
% Programs reporting
50%
40%
Training Complete
Apprentice
30%
Job
Further Education
20%
10%
0%
20% or less
21 - 50%
51 - 70%
71 - 90%
90+%
Proportion of trainees achieving outcome
14
Percentage of Grads Reached
Percentage of Program Graduates Reached
12%
6%
Less than 25%
16%
25%-50%
12%
50%-75%
75-90%
More than 90%
Don't know
26%
25%
15
Budgets
• Respondents’ budgets ranged widely
• Public money was most commonly used and also
most commonly mentioned as largest source of
funding
• < 20% of respondents receive no public funds
• > 70% report no student funds; ~50% report no biz
funds; nearly 60% report no philanthropic funds
• In-kind sources used by nearly half of respondents
• Consistent funding year to year and current
funding environment cited as challenges
16
Funding Sources
Funding Sources Used
Public: State
Public: Federal
Other: In-kind services
Public: Local
Philanthropic: Local foundations
Industry: Joint apprenticehsip programs
Industry: Contributions from employers
Philanthropic: Individual contributions
Students: Tuition/fee payments from 3rd party
Students: Tuition/fee payments from students
Industry: Corporate foundations
Students: Federal student aid
Philanthropic: National foundations
Philanthropic: Regional foundations
Industry: Fee-for-service revenue
Industry: Business association funds
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
% respondents receiving funds from source
17
70%
Conclusions
• ‘Pre-apprenticeship’ programs widespreadgeographically, by market segment, occupationally
– Programs well-positioned and eager to train for ‘green’ jobs
• Pre-apprenticeship programs serve populations that face
barriers in construction, but access to supportive
services uneven across programs
• Pre-apprenticeship challenged in connecting to industry,
and even apprenticeship programs struggle in
forecasting labor demand
– However, programs report there is demand
• Picture of skill levels that vary widely, both upon entry,
and likely upon exit
– Data on program length difficult to interpret
• Public sector major funder of programs—and often major
purchaser of services
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Further Questions
• Can public sector help improve forecasting
demand—through LMI resources or through role
as buyer/investor?
• Should pre-apprenticeship programs develop
more standards? What would that look like in
light of industry variability?
– What can we learn from “high performers” (e.g. those
with high job placement and targeted?; those with
high apprenticeship connection & supports?)
• So few connections to apprenticeship, and yet it
plays key skill development role for industry—
how can that aspect be strengthened?
19
For More Information
Maureen Conway / Allison Gerber
Workforce Strategies Initiative
The Aspen Institute
202-736-5800
[email protected]
www.aspenwsi.org
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Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Programs: Results from …