Tooling U-SME’s partners―the South Bay Workforce Investment Board and the Aero-Flex Unilateral Apprenticeship Committee―announced the successful registration of the first Aerospace Engineering Apprenticeship occupation in the US. Tooling U-SME, a provider of workforce and education development for the advanced manufacturing industry, is the sponsor of this new national learning program, which is the first registered apprenticeship in the US for the engineering discipline.
“We are extremely proud to be part of the team bringing the nation’s first Aerospace Engineering Apprenticeship occupation to the aerospace and advanced manufacturing industry,” said Jeannine Kunz, vice president, Tooling U-SME. “This registration is a significant accomplishment, as it supports the nation’s desire to increase the number of apprenticeship programs in America, while attracting and opening more doors for individuals who want to pursue careers in aerospace engineering.”
The Aero-Flex Aerospace Engineering Apprenticeship follows the implementation of Aero-Flex Pre-Apprenticeship, an innovative employer-centric “earn-and-learn” model for engineering. The Aero-Flex model was designed from conception to validation by industry partners and employers who appreciate a nontraditional model that would “flex” curriculum and program design to meet their business needs.
Initially championed by Northrop Grumman Corp., the Aero-Flex employer team, known as the Unilateral Apprenticeship Committee, now includes Impresa Aerospace LLC; L3 Electron Devices; Magnetika Inc.; Northrop Grumman Corp.; Space Vector Corp.; TEN TECH LLC; Verisurf; and Zodiac Water and Waste Aero Systems.
“A key element of the Aero-Flex Apprenticeship model is the flexibility companies have to design a program and develop curriculum that meets their specific business needs,” said Kunz. “This model is not only ideal for partners, it also allows students to gain real-world experience, receiving customized, employer-driven training at the same time they pursue their engineering education. This pathway is a win-win as employers gain skilled talent and the apprentice finds gainful employment.”