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German-Style Apprenticeships Gaining Ground In Georgia

Germany. When I think about the Germans I think about soccer, bratwurst (hmmm…. sausage) and beer. All things I personally enjoy.

Businesses, however, think differently. They think about world-class workforce development, because perhaps what Germany does best—yes, even better than soccer—is develop manufacturing via apprenticeships.

Back in 2016, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle launched the Georgia Consortium of Advanced Technical Training (GA CATT) Program, the first of its kind in the United States.

This is from the AJC article announcing the launch:

The program unites the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern U.S., Inc. with the Technical College System of Georgia and eight Coweta County manufacturing companies. Beginning in the 10th grade, high school students will now have the opportunity to complete their education with a high school diploma, German apprenticeship certificate and an associate degree in Industrial Mechanics through West Georgia Technical College.

The Technical College System of Georgia is one of strongest partners in the fight against gaps in the workforce. We’ve highlighted the TCSG in this space before, and this is yet another way they’re helping lead the fight.

Last year the program began modestly—six students in all. One year later 21 students have signed on to the dual enrollment program. What does dual enrollment mean? It means upon completion of the apprenticeship program, students will leave high school with the following:

·      Diploma

·      Associate’s Degree

·      Industrial Mechanic’s Credential

They could also leave with a full-time position with their mentors. Apprenticeship programs are one of the many ways Georgia is working on shoring up potential skills gaps, specifically in the manufacturing space.

Did you know the Workforce Division has a program dedicated solely to helping businesses create apprenticeships? Justin Haight runs the program, and later this week we’ll have a Q&A up where he talks more in detail about his role.

For more information on the GA CATT program, check out its website and be on the lookout for our Q&A with Haight later this week. 

Parrish Walton

Parrish Walton is a communications specialist with the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD). He is the primary author of the Georgia@Work blog, which aims to educate Georgia citizens on all of the great things done by the Workforce Division within GDEcD. Parrish is a proud product of the public school system of... more