The Talbot County Department of Economic Development and Tourism is partnering with Talbot County Public Schools and the Maryland Department of Labor to sponsor a virtual apprenticeship orientation for businesses on May 19 at 8 a.m.
“Our goal is simple,” says Jodie Colombo, School-to-Career Facilitator for TCPS. “We want to recruit more local businesses to participate in our Youth Apprenticeship Program.”
The Talbot County Youth Apprenticeship Program pairs local employers with students who want to “earn while they learn.” Juniors and seniors are eligible to work in career track occupations while earning both a fair wage and credits that count toward graduation.
Talbot County’s program is part of the Maryland Department of Labor’s Apprenticeship Maryland Program (AMP). It provides an opportunity for businesses to introduce students to in-demand careers and helps develop a pipeline of future employees.
The program also gives students the opportunity to get hands-on training and evaluate career options before investing in higher education. Youth apprentices gain valuable job skills and often have an advantage when seeking employment after high school.
Eligible employers hire students in industries such as manufacturing; science and health; technology, engineering, and math; business and finance; and culinary and hospitality; as well as the traditional trades.
Students can start as early as the summer before their junior year and continue to graduation. The students work a minimum of 450 hours while receiving related educational training through their school and earning a wage.
Colombo works with businesses to develop student work plans, recruits potential candidates, and ensures students meet both school and industry requirements. The Talbot County program, which began in 2018, has graduated eight students to date.
“Our program has produced talented, dedicated employees who graduate ready to work,” Colombo says. “Youth apprenticeships are a great way to develop a pipeline of talented, highly-skilled workers to help businesses grow.”
Colombo encourages Talbot County businesses to participate in the orientation program to learn more about the program and the application process. For more information, she can be reached at 410-490-4763 or [email protected].