The Department announced the availability of $42.5 million in Youth Apprenticeship Readiness grants to support the enrollment of youth (16-24 years, in-and-out of school) apprentices into new or existing Registered Apprenticeship Programs (RAPs).  

The Department intends to fund approximately 15 to 25 youth apprenticeship readiness grants, with awards ranging from $1 million to $5 million.  The amount of grant funding an applicant can receive will depend on the proposed number of youth enrolled in RAPs.  Allowable activities under this grant include establishing or expanding existing RAPs for youth, pre-apprenticeship leading to a RAP, and wrap-around/supportive services that enable youth to participate and succeed in a pre-apprenticeship leading to a RAP or a RAP.  Funds cannot be used to support IRAPs. 

Eligible Applicants:  Eligible lead applicants for these grants are private non-profit, for-profit, or public agencies and include: education and training providers, workforce development system entities, organizations functioning as workforce intermediaries, and state agencies. 

Program Goals:  This grant program will support apprenticeship expansion through six overarching goals:

  • Increase awareness and adoption of the earn-and-learn apprenticeship model as a solution for experiential learning at the secondary educational level;
  • Increase parental, young adult, and employer awareness around the benefits of youth participation in Registered Apprenticeship Programs (RAPs), as well as their engagement in these models;
  • Develop and expand the number of RAP opportunities for youth, ensuring they meet RAP standards and pre-apprenticeship programs are of high quality and lead to RAP;
  • Increase academic and career-focused learning among youth, based on sound assessments, to increase employability in the labor force;                          
  • Promote increased alignment between state education and workforce systems through the development of policies that facilitate the transition from school to a RAP; and
  • Increase RAP opportunities for all youth, particularly underrepresented populations (including women, people of color, ex-offenders, persons with disabilities), youth with barriers to employment, and out-of-school youth.

For additional information on this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), please see below: