In honor of National Apprenticeship Week, the American Association of Port Authorities wanted to spotlight the significance of apprentices in the maritime industry and urged stakeholders to expand apprenticeship training.
“Seaport industry employers and their maritime and supply chain industry partners are facing the converging forces of an aging workforce, rapid technology advances, acceleration of rapid ‘on-demand’ distribution of goods, and a decades-long lack of students entering the industry,” said Mary Beth Long, AAPA’s marketing and workforce development vice president. “AAPA strongly supports apprenticeships and related training programs. We’re working with ports and multimodal transportation, distribution and logistics employers nationwide to create apprenticeship-based career pathways that meet employers’ critical workforce needs and pay workers a family-supporting wage.”
The U.S. Department of Labor recently awarded AAPA a “Closing the Skills Gap” grant of almost $6 million to coordinate apprenticeships throughout the maritime sector.
“This country currently faces a skills gap and overall talent shortage in the number of qualified workers to meet the workforce demand across America’s critical seaport industry,” said Long. “AAPA strongly encourages its members and industry partners to join us in supporting apprenticeship training programs through adoption of, and direct investment and enrollment of their personnel in, workforce and professional development training.”