AAPA to Administer Apprenticeship Grants

AAPA Port Professional Manager (PPM) graduates in October 2019. This group of people has gone through a rigorous education and training program to prepare them for new challenges in the port industry.

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) has been chosen by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) to be among 28 U.S. entities to administer nearly $100 million being awarded through the Apprenticeship: Closing the Skills Gap grant program.

Grant awards under AAPA are for $5,888,738, to be used for the building and expansion of apprenticeship programs within the transportation and maritime industry. The grant places a heavy emphasis on private sector partnerships, with a corresponding 45 percent match of federal funds.

The focus of the grants is to expand sector-based apprenticeship programs for middle- to high-skill jobs to bring new entrants into the workforce and upskill current incumbents. This will be done by creating or building on existing apprenticeship programs in industries including advanced manufacturing, healthcare and information technology.

America’s ports, and the logistics industry service providers that move cargo and passengers to and from ports, are undergoing tremendous changes due to factors such as supply chain digitalization, artificial intelligence, automation, cybersecurity advances and other technology disruptors. These disruptors create workforce capability gaps that are best filled through apprenticeships.

AAPA has assembled a national team of 10 employers, three institutions of higher education, three industry associations and one workforce intermediary. This team will enable AAPA to implement a proposed plan to register more than 5,000 apprentices nationwide, utilizing the nearly $6 million in USDOL funds requested through the proposal.

As the national industry association charged with grant administration, AAPA will coordinate with its partner organizations, offer port-related courses that can be built into apprenticeship programs, build relationships with outside transportation organizations that are interested in offering apprenticeship programs, and widely market its programs throughout its membership and within its stakeholder communities.

Learn more at www.aapa-ports.org.

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