Apprenticeship Profiles

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The stories below highlight Apprenticeship successes from apprentices and companies throughout Illinois. Registered apprenticeship data supplied by the U.S. Department of Labor indicates that Illinois has 13,754 registered apprentices, with 486 active Registered Apprenticeship Programs and 296 sponsors. Sponsors are entities such as businesses, employer associations, community colleges and local workforce areas.

Apprentices


Justyce Bundy PhotoJustyce Bundy, Student

Location: Peoria/North Central Region

Name of Program: Nursing Assistant to Medical Assistant Apprenticeship Bridge for Youth Program. The Bridge is a project of Methodist College, UnityPoint Health and Career Link

What are the goals for your participation in the apprenticeship program?
My goal for this apprenticeship program is to become first a Certified Nursing Assistant and then a Certified Medical Assistant as well as become an amazing asset to UnityPoint Health.

What are you hoping to achieve by being part of the Apprenticeship program?
I would like to be the best I can be.  I would like to become a CNA that everyone loves working with and patients trust.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of the apprenticeship?
The largest benefit of the apprenticeship is having the support team at Methodist. The Methodist College staff and even my fellow apprentices have been amazing in supporting me. They really want me to succeed!

Share something about this program:
The fun thing about my clinical experience is the hands-on experience.  I love the smiles that the patients give when they welcome us to the room.

Paolo Lopez PhotoPaolo Lopez, Location Department Intern

Location: Chicago, IL

Name of Program: Mirkopoulos Internship Program – CineCares Foundation

Brief Overview of your Program:
A 12-week paid internship in the Location Department at NBC “Chicago P.D.,” assisting with all areas necessary to secure locations for filming and for the cast and crew while filming.

What are the goals for your participation in this program?
My goal is to be a valuable asset to the department by learning as much as I can, and I hope to achieve long-term employment.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship?
Learning a new industry while earning an income.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
This internship was overwhelming at first because everything was new to me. Now that it is underway, I have learned enough that I feel like I am actually contributing. It is a lot of hard work but I love it and I am up for the challenge.

Rachida Belsifar PhotoRachida Belsifar, Apprentice

Location: Chicago

Name of Program: Accenture’s Chicago Apprenticeship Program

Academic Partner: City Colleges of Chicago

Brief Overview of your Program:
Accenture has paid apprenticeships that provide work experience, skills development and technical education in a program that’s tailored to the needs of local communities. In Chicago, Accenture recruits apprentices pursuing associate’s degrees to take part in a one-year program to develop skills and proficiency in high-demand fields, such as IT and cybersecurity, providing on-the-job learning, mentoring and potentially an offer of full-time employment at the end of it.

What are the goals for your participation in this program?
I hope to learn as much as possible, expand my responsibilities and be part of a team.  I look forward to continuing to build on my market-relevant skills.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship program?
My apprenticeship is providing hands-on work experience and an opportunity to learn new technologies, develop my skills, and advance my professional career. In addition, I feel supported and comfortable in my work environment with being part development trainings, taking on responsibility, people asking for my input in all areas of involvement and being included in social and fun activities around the workplace.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
The apprenticeship program is a great opportunity to build on what I learned at City Colleges as I enter the workforce and gain on-the-job experience.

Ward Manufacturing Company LogoDavid Abramson, Tool and Die Maker Apprentice

Location: Evanston, Illinois

Company Name: Ward Manufacturing Company

Academic Partner: Technology and Manufacturing Association (TMA)

Brief Overview of your Program:
Ward Manufacturing has sponsored me to go to school for my apprenticeship at TMA. I attend TMA two days a week for the next 3 years to gain the title of Journeyman Tool and Die Maker. I also work full-time at Ward Manufacturing during the week to get hands-on experience with machining, CNC, trouble shooting dies, and other various tasks related to the process of precision metal stamping.

What are the goals for your participation in this program?
My goal is to finish the apprenticeship program and come out with a career I can have for the rest of my life. I plan on going for a fourth year of school to learn to design and engineer tooling for metal stamping. This is something a lot of companies don’t have in-house anymore and is a huge benefit to my company and my future.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship?
I love the idea of working while building a path for a career and attending school with never having to worry about student loans or debt. Without a doubt that has been the greatest benefit of my apprenticeship, 401k comes in second place.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
There has been a massive decrease in people going into trades and skilled labor and companies are hungry for young, enthusiastic people to join the workforce. I wish that more people coming out of high school who can’t afford to go to a big university or don’t feel like college is the path for them, could see how many jobs are available in the trades and manufacturing that are good paying, lifelong careers.

Navid Patel PhotoNavid Patel, Apprentice

Location: Chicago

Name of Program: Accenture’s Chicago Apprenticeship Program

Academic Partner: City Colleges of Chicago

Brief Overview of your Program:
Accenture has paid apprenticeships that provide work experience, skills development and technical education in a program that’s tailored to the needs of local communities. In Chicago, Accenture recruits apprentices pursuing associate’s degrees to take part in a one-year program to develop skills and proficiency in high-demand fields, such as IT and cybersecurity, providing on-the-job learning, mentoring and potentially an offer of full-time employment at the end of it.

What are the goals for your participation in this program?
My goal for this apprenticeship is gaining real-world experience in the workplace. I want to use my experience and acquired skills to secure a full-time, permanent role within Accenture. I'm gaining valuable skills in high demand areas, such as cloud computing. My end goal is to continue building on my skills and take it to the next level.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship program?
This apprenticeship has been very beneficial. One key benefit is seeing how my work has real-world impact to our teams' overall performance. I am a valued member of the team who is involved in day-to-day processes; through this hands-on experience, I'm building new skills every day.

Is there anything else you would like to add?
I am really enjoying learning new skills, while working at Accenture. I also enjoy working with our team who has been supportive of my growth during my time here.

Angel Montejano PhotoAngel Montejano, Student

Location: Peoria/North Central Region

Name of Program:
Nursing Assistant to Medical Assistant Apprenticeship Bridge for Youth Program. The Bridge is a project of Methodist College, UnityPoint Health and Career Link

What are the goals for your participation in the apprenticeship program?
By participating in this apprenticeship program, I am able to not just receive one certificate, but two. My goal is to use the training of one certificate and tie the information in when I am training for my [second] certificate.

What are you hoping to achieve by being part of the Apprenticeship program?
I am hoping that by the end of this program, I can help others in the healthcare setting by having a better understanding of their point of view and knowing that I can help them feel better.

Personally, what have you found to be the largest benefit of the apprenticeship?
The largest benefit is having other apprentices in this program with me. I am not going through this alone, I have people I can speak to during my journey.

Share something about your program:
Being in this program has made me grow as a person. I know that I am working hard towards something that I will be proud of. It has been very exciting for me so far, learning new material, and actually going in for clinicals. I am very proud of what my fellow apprentices and I have achieved so far, and we have much more to achieve.

Businesses


Alicia Martin PictureAlicia Martin, President & CEO

Location: Elk Grove Village

Name of Program: Learn Your Trade, Associated Builders & Contractors, Illinois (ABCIL) Chapter Apprenticeship & Training Program

Brief Overview of Program:
ABCIL is an Accredited Training Sponsor of the National Center for Construction & Research (NCCER) and utilizes its standardized training and credentialing program for the industry.

Trainees receive transferable credentials issued by NCCER including transcripts, certificates and an initial wallet card that are tracked through the NCCER Registry System upon each level completion. All ABCIL’s apprenticeship training courses are registered with the United States Department of Labor. This affiliation gives trainees the option of becoming a registered apprentice. 

How many people have graduated your program?
ABCIL has been in existence since 1975 and became a registered US DOL Apprenticeship Program in February of 1989.  Since that time, hundreds of apprentices have received credentials from the NCCER in recognition of their program and level completions.

Why did your organization implement an apprenticeship program? 
The ABCIL training program was originally created to help our member contractors train their employees. As the economy has improved over the course of the past few years there is a shortage of skilled tradesmen and women thus, a growing need to provide a talent pipeline for the construction industry.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship program? 
For the trainees, financial rewards are one of the largest benefits from choosing ABCIL’s training over a traditional 4-year university program. While attending ABCIL, a trainee can already be working in their preferred trade and make an excellent wage in a short period of time. If the trainee is not employed, our association has over 300 contractor members, most are in need of hiring entry-level employees who are eager to enter the industry.  The apprenticeship program provides a talent pipeline for the industry as well as endless opportunities for the trainees to have a lifetime career with skills that will always be in high demand.

thyssenkrupp LogoMichael Barth, Apprenticeship Advisor

Location: Danville

Name of Program: thyssenkrupp Advanced Manufacturing Youth Apprenticeship

Academic Partner: Danville Area Community College

Brief Overview of Program:
Our Youth Apprenticeship Program allows us to take juniors and seniors from local high schools and bring them into our facility. The students work in each of our production processes for the first 15 weeks. The Youth Apprentices then rotate through our supporting departments of Safety, Logistics, Engineering, Quality, Maintenance and OPX/Production. They spend 10 weeks in each department. While in these departments, Youth Apprentices are given projects and have a list of competencies to complete that are specific to each rotation. The Youth Apprentices see the real world workplace inside thyssenkrupp.
The Youth Apprentices attend high school in the morning, attend Danville Area Community College some afternoons during the week, and then work part-time at thyssenkrupp for a minimum of six hours a week, after school. While working part-time, the youth apprentices are genuine thyssenkrupp employees, earning competitive wages.

How many people have graduated your program?   
We currently have 25 students in our program between our Presta facility and our Crankshaft facility.  19 students have graduated the program since the start in 2013. 

Why did your organization implement an apprenticeship program?
The apprenticeship allows us to help develop the future workforce while also developing a possible future colleague.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship program? 
The largest benefit is giving our Youth Apprentices an opportunity to develop the skills necessary to succeed in the workplace. It also allows our current employees to develop their skills.  Employees learn the importance of mentoring and coaching.

Zurich North America Group PhotoZurich North America, Company

Location: Schaumberg

Name of Program: General Insurance Registered Apprenticeship

Academic Partner: Harper College

Brief Overview of Program:
The General Insurance Registered Apprenticeship program takes the apprentice from entry-level skills to full job competency using the approach of “learning while earning.” The apprentice earns an Associates in Applied Science with an emphasis in business administration general insurance. This transfers from the community college to a university where they can complete a bachelor’s degree.

What is the scale of your program?   
Zurich has made a five-year commitment to hire at least 100 insurance apprentice employees.

Why did your organization implement an apprenticeship program?
Zurich’s approach in the US is based on Switzerland’s highly successful national apprenticeship program. From their experience in Switzerland they know that apprenticeships are a very powerful way of developing core business competencies and inspiring young people to take on new challenges.

What have you found to be the largest benefit of your apprenticeship program? 
The registered apprenticeship program helps fill Zurich’s skills gap for hiring middle management positions. The apprentice graduates with an associate’s degree and zero debt for their college education, and the company gets a well-rounded diverse workforce.