The COVID-19 pandemic created a disproportionate impact on workers who were already at risk of being left behind—including historically underrepresented groups and those without four-year degrees. Apprenticeships offer a way to address these disparities – hastening recovery for individuals and the community.
“By creating new career pathways for non-traditional hires and reskilling those whose jobs have been—or will be—disrupted, employers can develop a workforce with the skills to fill the jobs of the future,” wrote Dawn Spreeman-Heine, Managing Director, Commercial Risk Solutions at Aon, and Mary Beth Gracy, Houston Office Managing Director at Accenture, in a recent co-authored LinkedIn article.
This month, Aon and Accenture—with support from the Greater Houston Partnership—proudly launched the Greater Houston Apprentice Network. In 2021 alone, the two firms have launched apprentice networks Washington, D.C., Northern California, Minnesota, and Philadelphia.
Individual employer apprenticeship programs throughout these cities may vary, but they all share a common mission – to lower barriers to entry, such as four-year degree requirements – for corporate roles, and help create career pathways within the firms. This effort is all a part of a commitment Aon made in 2020 to invest $30 million that would help grow provide 10,000 apprenticeships nationwide by 2030.
Five additional founding members have joined the Greater Houston Apprentice Network: Dow Chemical, Whorley, Texas Mutual Insurance, Amazon Web Services and University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. These companies have committed to creating apprenticeship positions within their institutions, as well as promoting the program to others. Together, the Greater Houston Apprentice Network hopes to create 500 apprenticeship roles in the Houston area by 2025.
To read more about Aon’s Apprenticeship Program, click here.
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