Expanding Registered Apprenticeship Opportunities to Underrepresented Populations: Findings from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Evaluation (Issue Brief)
ETA launched the American Apprenticeship Initiative (AAI) in October 2015 and provided five-year grants to 46 grantees to expand registered apprenticeship into new sectors and to populations historically underrepresented in apprenticeships. Some AAI grantees received no-cost extensions of their periods of performance through September 2021. In April 2016, ETA commissioned an evaluation of the AAI to build evidence about the effectiveness of registered apprenticeship for apprentices and employers. The evaluation included four sub-studies (an implementation study, an outcomes study, an employer return-on-investment (ROI) study, and an assessment of a demonstration to encourage employers to adopt apprenticeship). Three reports comprised the implementation sub-study. In addition to the sub-study reports, the AAI Evaluation included five topical issue briefs.
This brief examines the recruitment, program experiences, and post-program employment and earnings outcomes of AAI apprentices from underrepresented populations relative to all AAI apprentices and traditional apprentices. The AAI implementation and outcomes sub-study reports examine outcomes for all underrepresented populations. The analyses for this brief combines data from DOL program data, surveys of participants and grantees, and administrative earnings data.
Key findings include the following:
- Nearly 54 percent of AAI apprentices were women or people of color, compared to 39 percent of all registered apprenticeships. Compared to all registered apprentices, AAI has a larger share of women and Black apprentices.
- Most apprenticeship completers from underrepresented populations were employed, most often with the same employer that operated the apprenticeship. Employment rates ranged from 85 percent among Black apprentices to 97 percent among Other Race (or non-Hispanic) apprentices.
- Earnings grew by about 50 percent on average between the year prior to starting the AAI apprenticeship and the year after the program was completed. Women experienced higher earnings growth than did men. Earnings growth was highest for Other Race apprentices.
- Most of the difference in earnings growth between Black and White AAI apprentices occurred among women. A larger share of Black women apprentices than White women apprentices enrolled in healthcare, occupations with lower earnings levels and lower growth. Earnings for White women apprentices grew by nearly $22,000, whereas earnings for Black women apprentices grew by about $13,000.
- The choice of AAI apprenticeship occupation has implications for wage growth. Average wage growth for apprentices in computer/IT occupations was the largest, followed by healthcare apprentices, manufacturing, and construction.
- Achieving Apprenticeship Program and Apprentice Registration Targets: Grantee Outcomes from the American Apprenticeship Initiative
- Beyond Productivity: How Employers Gain More from Apprenticeship: Findings from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Evaluation (Issue Brief)
- Challenges and Opportunities for Expanding Registered Apprenticeship with Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Title I: Findings from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Evaluation (Issue Brief)
- Did Apprentices Achieve Faster Earnings Growth Than Comparable Workers? Findings from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Evaluation (Issue Brief)
- Do Employers Earn Positive Returns to Investments in Apprenticeship? Evidence from Registered Programs under the American Apprenticeship Initiative
- Engaging Employers to Register Apprenticeship Programs: Outcomes from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Employer Engagement Demonstration
- Expanding Apprenticeship to New Sectors and Populations: The Experiences and Outcomes of Apprentices in the American Apprenticeship Initiative
- Expanding Registered Apprenticeship in the United States: Description of American Apprenticeship Initiative Grantees and Their Programs
- Implementing Registered Apprenticeship Programs: Experiences of 10 American Apprenticeship Initiative Grantees
- What Are the Costs of Generating Apprenticeships? Findings from the American Apprenticeship Initiative Evaluation (Issue Brief)