Iowa Workforce Development Communications
For Immediate Release
Date: November 15, 2023
Contact: Jesse Dougherty
Telephone: 515-725-5487

Printer Friendly Version (PDF)

IWD Celebrates National Apprenticeship Week and New Innovation in Iowa Programs  

Week highlights Iowa’s success with Registered Apprenticeships, their importance to building the workforce.

DES MOINES, IOWA – Iowa Workforce Development is celebrating National Apprenticeship Week, with a focus this year on the innovation that is driving new growth in Registered Apprenticeship (RA) programs across the state. Iowa has remained a leader in not only the growth of new RA programs, but also in the unique ways that partnerships have formed to build the workforce pipeline in more professions than ever before.

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW), which takes place from November 13-19 this year, is a nationwide celebration between employers, apprentices, and various partners reflecting the success and value of RA programs in the workforce. IWD is commemorating the week by showcasing success stories, hosting events, and talking about the ways that RA programs have recently expanded to create new approaches to preparing the next generation of Iowans.

IWD is joining partners and staff across the state to hold various events this month to commemorate the success of RA programs and their benefit to both job seekers and employers, including at IowaWORKS offices. For more information on local events and opportunities, contact your local IowaWORKS office (Office Contact Information).

Data provided by the U.S. Department of Labor shows that in Federal Fiscal Year 2023, Iowa continued to make strides in the growth of RA programs and saw increases in nearly every notable category, including: Number of new and active programs, participating employers, total apprentices, and overall completions. IWD also nearly doubled the number of new programs it helped create, and supported a 43 percent increase in the number of total high school apprentices.

“Registered Apprenticeship (RA) Programs produce invaluable skills that provide two great benefits for Iowans – immediate real work experience and assistance with charting the course for a successful career,” said Governor Reynolds. “Iowa’s early recognition of apprenticeship programs has set us apart from many other states, and we’re continuing to widen the gap as we explore innovative ways to get high school students and adults into successful career pathways.”

Following legislation signed by Gov. Reynolds earlier this year, Iowa has been developing a new State Apprenticeship Agency (SAA), which will ultimately better position the state to promote innovation in RA models and create more efficiencies for programs that involve high school students, job seekers, and employers in occupations across the state.

“The sooner that more employers and their communities can implement these unique models to recruit young Iowans into apprenticeships, the more that we’ll see our workforce pipeline grow,” said Beth Townsend, Executive Director of Iowa Workforce Development. “RA programs are about maximizing the talent we have here now and helping them create a feasible pathway to a long and successful career.”

Additional information on RA programs can be found at the links below:

RA Statistics in Iowa (Federal Fiscal Year 2023)

  • New Programs: 169 (increase from 163)
  • Active Programs: 957 (increase from 890)
  • IWD created programs: 63 (increase from 38)
  • Employers Engaged: 2,136 (increase from 1,988)
  • Total Apprentices: 9,954 (increase from 9,731)  
  • Total High School Apprentices: 293 (increase from 204)
  • Total New Apprentices: 5,947 (increase from 5,402)       
  • Certificates Awarded: 1,946 (increase from 1,870)