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Union Apprenticeships: The Bachelor’s Degree Of The Construction Industry

Union Apprenticeships: The Bachelor’s Degree Of The Construction Industry

A few months ago, Doug Winston posted some data about earnings potentials in the skilled trades. That post pretty much went viral with over 1.5 million views. The post detailed some wage data comparing the earnings of the average accountant to the average electrician.

Since we just celebrated the 86th anniversary of The National Apprenticeship Act, I thought I would share some more data which confirms my findings.

A national study by the Illinois Economic Policy Institute (ILEPI), has found that on average, graduates of joint labor-management (union) apprenticeship programs in the construction industry are able to achieve near wage and benefits parity with other types of workers with four-year college degrees.

The report, “Union Apprenticeships: The Bachelor’s Degree of the Construction Industry – Data from the United States 2010-2020”, analyzed ten years of data from the Current Population Survey’s Annual Social and Economic Supplement released by the U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Census Bureau. The data reveals that broad stigmas that have long been associated with vocational training alternatives to college, are simply not grounded in fact.

As parents, we need to make our kids aware of these career choices. Non-profits such as Bring Back the Trades, Inc are helping kids to explore the skilled trades through education, career fairs and scholarships to trade schools. Let's get the message out that "college for every student" is myth and there are many, many outstanding career opportunities available to young men and women in the skilled trades.

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