The Herald Bulletin

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Local Business

July 15, 2014

Ivy Tech president attends apprenticeships summit


Fresh from a White House-sponsored summit on expanding apprenticeship opportunities in high-growth industries, Ivy Tech Community College President Tom Snyder said some programs in Indiana are on the leading edge of that effort.

Snyder joined 40 other academic, business, government and public policy professionals Tuesday in Washington, D.C., and discussed strategies to meet an Obama administration goal announced in April to double the number of apprenticeships in the nation in high-paying and emerging occupations in health care, information technology and advanced manufacturing.

The program, called the American Apprenticeship Initiative, is being administered by the U.S. Department of Labor and will be funded with $100 million in grants.

Secretary of Labor Tom Perez and Jeff Zients, director of the National Economic Council, presided over Tuesday's summit. 

Snyder, who has participated in other summits like this over the past several years, represented Ivy Tech and community colleges around the country that can play a pivotal role launching new training and apprenticeship programs.

He said such efforts are needed because by 2020, 65 percent of all jobs will require some form of post-secondary education, 30 percent of which could be filled by apprenticeships, making them "another way to strengthen our education delivery system."

One initiative Snyder is excited about is expanding Ivy Tech's Advanced Automation and Robotics Technician, or AART program developed in concert with the Indiana Automotive Council, including Cummins Inc., Subaru, Chrysler, General motors, Aisin USA and Honda.

The program is designed to maximize student learning and outcomes using a model that combines internships and applied classroom education in advanced manufacturing.

That program isn't currently offered in Anderson. Snyder said the recently proposed Purdue Polytechnic Institute would be an ideal location for the $12 million program.

"Our objective is to have one of these in Anderson," Snyder said. "We don't have money to do a building, but we do, I think, have the money to do that" by partnering with another institution.

In addition, the Anderson Department of Economic Development has begun requesting companies interested in locating here include internship programs where they ask for incentives, said Greg Winkler, director. And existing companies are being asked to work toward that goal as well.

Like Stu Hirsch on Facebook and follow him @stuhirsch on Twitter, or call 640-4861.

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