Today, the burden of educating the newest members of Colorado’s workforce falls directly on our schools. But businesses are having difficulty finding employees with the appropriate competencies to effectively fill skilled positions. Modern youth apprenticeship addresses the problem by changing helping businesses have a hand in shaping their young talent and providing the education system with an applied-learning environment for its students.

For students, youth apprenticeship is an options multiplier. Apprenticeship can be a powerful enhancement to their education or a fast-track to a middle-class career, or both.

Apprenticeship is not a diversion from higher education—it’s a rigorous education option that combines theoretical learning with practical learning that focuses career and education objectives. It can also be a direct path to high-paying, in-demand jobs in Business Operations, Financial Services, Advanced Manufacturing, Information Technology and Healthcare.

Any student—regardless of future plans—can benefit from apprenticeship.

A student can start as an apprentice and end with a Ph.D., or apprenticeship can train a student to step directly into a bookkeeper position so they can go on to be a CFO. It’s a model of education that reveals multiple options to career and higher education.