WI Secretary Cites Apprenticeship as Pathway to Good Jobs

Green Bay, WI (CompNewsNetwork) – Department of Workforce Development (DWD) Secretary Roberta Gassman said today Wisconsin's model apprenticeship program can help dislocated workers and others get good jobs and
provide skilled workers for infrastructure projects in the federal economic recovery package now before Congress.

"Wisconsin was the first state with an apprenticeship program and even now, in the midst of our nation's worst economic crisis in years, this model program is one proven way to help struggling families get back
on their feet," Secretary Gassman said in addressing the 24th Biennial Apprenticeship Conference in Green Bay.

"The recession has left many workers in the skilled trades without work," Secretary Gassman said. "But Governor Doyle has a list of infrastructure projects ready to go, and he is working closely with Wisconsin
Congressman Dave Obey and other members of our delegation on the recovery and reinvestment package that President Obama has prescribed for our troubled economy. These projects will put people
to work, and the apprenticeship program will help provide the skilled workers we need in our nation's economic recovery."

Secretary Gassman cited Governor Doyle's leading role among the nation's governors in urging a stimulus package that helps states facing substantial budget shortfalls due to the country's economic
crisis. In testimony before Congress last week, Governor Doyle said the stimulus package should include infrastructure projects that meet the nation's long neglected need for modern passenger rail service. Last
Friday, he created a new Office of Recovery and Reinvestment to see that Wisconsin moves quickly on infrastructure projects and turns federal stimulus money into paychecks.

Secretary Gassman delivered opening remarks for the two-day conference with advance registration of nearly 300. The conference at the KI Convention Center featured an apprenticeship expo with 44
exhibitors. On the opening day, between 400 and 450 high school students visited the booths and learned about careers in skilled trades.

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