The collaboration between the Idaho Workforce Development Council (WDC), a YARG grantee, and Idaho Business for Education (IBE), the council’s sub-recipient, exemplifies one of the key strategies for a successful Registered Apprenticeship (RA): building partnerships. IBE is part of a collective effort driven by the WDC, Idaho Department of Labor (IDOL), area community colleges, and other partners, all working in tandem to implement Registered Apprenticeship statewide.
One of the most significant partners is the Nez Perce Tribe (NPT), which IBE guided in launching RA on its reservation in north-central Idaho. The alliances supporting the program have led to positive outcomes, enabling the tribe to achieve key RA objectives, including:
- Recruiting Apprentices
The Nez Perce Reservation is home to over 3,500 citizens over 770,000 acres. The high demand for job training made it a receptive environment for RA programming. IBE’s assistance facilitated implementation and provided the expertise to recruit potential candidates.
- Establishing Career Pathways
The NPT had a ready-made administrative infrastructure in its Tribal Employment Rights Office (TERO) that could identify career pathways based on their workforce needs. As the tribe became more adept at program development, they could use their tribal services and enterprises as workforce training opportunities in addition to those of their employer partners.
Establishing strong business relationships contributes to the sustainability and expansion of apprenticeship on the Nez Perce Reservation. Engaged employers will likely contribute funding to sustain their RA programs beyond the YARG grant.
- Creating Rural Programming
IBE’s partnership with NPT brings career development to a rural setting – something that is often difficult to accomplish. The support of IBE and Idaho’s robust statewide network offers potential solutions to the challenges typically faced by such rural programs: travel distance, transportation, and inadequate internet access.
The Nez Perce tribe is collaborating with Lapwai High School on the Nez Perce Reservation in their construction apprenticeship program. Looking ahead, they have identified Certified Nursing Assistant as a potential second career pathway, with North Idaho Community College as a potential partner.