Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds is traveling the state this week, promoting the state’s program of registered apprenticeships with Iowa employers. This week is “Apprenticeship Appreciation and Awareness Week.”
Eighteen-year-old Josh Smith is getting paid while learning welding at Central Campus High School in Des Moines. “I’ve been there for two years now. Both years have been amazing, high-quality teaching,” Smith says. “The chance for us to apply our skills, earn more on-the-job training and getting paid while I learn is something students all should have.”
Smith is working with Mid-American Energy while learning welding at the Central Campus School in Des Moines. “I started welding when I was younger. I got into it because my Grandpa was a welder and was I was in the Scouts I earned a merit badge for it. It sparked my interest. It was fun,” according to Smith.
Officials with Governor Branstad’s administration say they hope to double the number of registered apprenticeships with Iowa employers over the next five years. It’s part of their goal to get more Iowans into post high school training and education. Under the program, trainees are paid to learn a skilled trade or other profession.
Photo and story by Joyce Russell of Iowa Public Radio.