Missouri’s governor traveled to Columbia on Tuesday afternoon to sign an executive order creating an Office of Apprenticeship and Work-Based Learning, within the state Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development.
Governor Mike Parson (R) signed it during the Apprenticeship Missouri Summit, at the Drury Plaza East. The department hosted the summit.
“Through this office we will continue working to increase apprenticeships and work-based learning opportunities,” Parson says. “We have some of the hardest-working, talented individuals in the nation right here in the state of Missouri.”
The governor says the state must ensure Missourians are getting the skills and training they need to fill high-demand jobs.
He says apprenticeships play a key role in developing a workforce that’s prepared to meet future demands. Parson told the audience that Missouri has reached 10,000 new registered apprenticeships.
“We recently reached the milestone of being second in the nation for new apprenticeships, second in the United States of America Missouri is,” he said to applause from the audience of about 100.
He also notes Missouri ranks second in the nation for completed apprenticeships.
Parson says the more training and education Missourians have, the more productive they can be. Governor Parson spoke to Missourinet after the ceremony, saying the executive order he’s signed will strengthen the state’s workforce.
“You really establish this apprenticeship program from here on out, is what you’re really doing. You’re making everybody know that this is truly something we’re putting a huge emphasis on in the Department of Higher Education that we want to get done,” says Parson.
He says Missouri must continue to take action on workforce development, noting only 28 percent of Missourians have degrees and that 72 percent do not. He praises the Legislature’s bipartisan passage of “Fast Track,” which allows Missourians to receive advanced training in high-demand areas.
State Rep. Kathy Swan, R-Cape Girardeau, sponsored Fast Track.
Click here to listen to the full interview between Missourinet’s Brian Hauswirth and Governor Mike Parson, which was recorded at the Apprenticeship Missouri Summit in Columbia on November 12, 2019:
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