At a White House ceremony on Thursday, President Trump celebrated the one-year anniversary of an initiative to spur job training by companies, gaining a fresh promise from businesses to train nearly 1.2 million workers.
The Pledge to America’s Workers, led by Senior White House Advisor Ivanka Trump, has created a national strategy for training and retraining the workers needed across high-demand industries.
Ms. Trump told the attendees, “This administration believes that every American should have a chance to earn a great living doing work that they love. […] Over the last year, more than 300 businesses, have signed the pledge — businesses large and small — and today we celebrate reaching 12 million pledged commitments. […] This pledge is more than just a number. Every single pledge is a commitment to the promise of an individual and his or her potential.”
National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons joined the ceremony to sign the pledge, with companies committing to provide training opportunities to 1,186,000 manufacturing workers over the next five years.
Timmons explained that it will take a two-pronged approach to solve the industry’s skills gap crisis, “Our commitment from the National Association of Manufacturers is to attract more workers to our sector through education programs and our Creators Wanted campaign that we’ve launched across the country. And it’s also to retrain and upskill workers that are already in the manufacturing sector.”
Also on hand, several CEOs touting their companies’ ongoing efforts. Among them, Toyota’s Jim Lentz, who committed to training 200,000 workers, partnering with 27 community colleges across 11 states. An example of this commitment can be seen in the successful Advanced Manufacturing Technician (AMT) Program. And Lockheed Martin which pledged 8,000 internships and apprenticeships and worker training initiatives, along with $150 million towards STEM scholarships and training for workers.
In the other key area of the program, the Labor Department reports that the number of registered apprentices increased 10% last year to 585,026 people.
You can see the entire event here: