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Stacey Abrams kicked off her “Jobs for Georgia” tour in Savannah, GA by announcing a commitment producing 22,000 active apprenticeships in Georgia by 2022. The commitment is first in a series of proposals to be unveiled over the course of August 2018 that will help build a thriving and diverse economy in every part of the state.

While in coastal Georgia, Abrams also visited Coastal Solar to discuss her plan to create 25,000-45,000 advanced energy jobs in solar, wind, hydro, and biomass.

“Georgia leaders must unlock opportunity for workers in every part of the state by helping them access the skills they need to support themselves and their families,” said Democratic gubernatorial nominee Stacey Abrams. “As governor, I will set a bold new goal of 22,000 active apprenticeships per year in the state of Georgia by 2022 to help set workers on a clear path to the middle class by allowing them to pursue good-paying jobs in every part of the state, and build a skilled workforce to grow and strengthen our economy.”

Additional priorities for skills development and removal of barriers include debt-free graduation, youth employment, soft skills training, veteran employment support and reentry programs for the formerly incarcerated.

Apprenticeships help workers advance their skills while earning a living and a credential. Nationally, workers who complete apprenticeships earn an average of $60,000 and a lifetime gain of $300,000 over their peers. On the employer-side, manufacturers and other businesses benefit from a pipeline of skilled workers, increased productivity, and reduced turnover.

To date, Georgia has registered apprenticeship programs through partnerships with the Technical College System of Georgia, trade unions, U.S. Department of Labor, and employers; however, more programs are needed across the state and better connections across systems so more Georgia workers and employers can benefit. Right next door, South Carolina has 7 times more apprenticeship programs than Georgia, and serves 9,500 more workers.

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