Trump Signs Executive Order Establishing Apprenticeship Programs with U.S. Companies for 3.8 Million Workers

Melanie Arter | July 19, 2018 | 8:10pm EDT
Font Size

( - President Donald Trump signed an executive order Thursday establishing a workforce initiative to establish apprenticeships with U.S. companies and on-the-job training for American workers.

“I will be signing an executive order to establish the National Council for the American Worker. That's a first. This Council will be made up of top officials across the government. We're also establishing an outside advisory board of industry leaders and experts, which we will announce in the coming weeks, very shortly. A lot of people want to be on that board very badly. I have some great people going on that board,” he said.

“Together, their task will be to develop a national workforce and strategy to equip Americans of all ages and at all stages of their career with the skills they need to thrive in the modern economy. Whether it’s a high school student looking to land their first job -- first job ever,” the president said.

“They've got a lot of enthusiasm, and they lose that enthusiasm when they don't land that job, but now they're all landing jobs. Or a late-career worker who wants to learn a new trade, we want every American to have the chance to earn a great living doing a great job that they love, where they wake up in the morning and they can't get to work fast enough. A lot of these people know that feeling. That's why they're in the position they're in,” he said.

“In that spirit, I'm proud to announce an exciting new challenge and the beginning of a new national movement. We're asking businesses and organizations across the country to sign our new pledge to America’s workers,” Trump said.

“Today, 23 companies and associations are pledging to expand apprenticeships. That's an interesting word for me to be saying, right? ‘The Apprentice.’ I never actually put that together until just now. That was a good experience, I will tell you that. Isn't that strange? Ivanka, I never associated -- but here we are. Can't get away from that word. That's a great word for on the job training and vocational education,” he said.

On hand were executives from the following companies: Aerospace Industries Association, American Hotel and Lodging Association, American Trucking Associations, Associated Builders and Contractors, Associated General Contractors of America, FedEx, Foxconn, General Motors, Home Depot, IBM, Internet Association, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft, National Association of Homebuilders, National Restaurant Association, National Retail Federation, North America's Building Trades Unions, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, Society for Human Resource Management, Signatory Wall and Ceiling Contractors Alliance, UPS, and Wal-Mart.

Altogether, they committed to training more than 3.8 million students and workers for new careers, the president said.

“This is only day one, and we far exceeded our initial goal of 500,000 students and workers. We thought it was going to be 500,000, and it's close to 4 million. And by the time the day ends, it will probably be well over 4 million,” Trump said. “In the days and months ahead, we hope that hundreds of companies and organizations will join us in this effort.”

The president touted the economic success of his administration thus far, including the creation of 3.7 million jobs since the 2016 election.

“In the month of June alone, we grew the workforce by more than 600,000 workers,” he said.

“We're in the longest positive job growth streak in American history. African American unemployment has reached its lowest level in American history. Hispanic unemployment is at its lowest level in American history. Asian unemployment has reached its lowest level in American history,” Trump said.

Even women’s unemployment is at its lowest level in 65 years, he said. “But within about two weeks, I think we'll be able to say ‘in American history,’ because it's moving quickly.”

Trump said his administration has already lifted “forgotten Americans” like ex-cons, “off the sidelines, out of the margins, and back into the workforce.”

“We are giving a second chance at life to the 620,000 former inmates who reenter society each year. There's nothing like a great, great jobs market to take care of that situation. It's incredible what's happened with people that were in prison that, previous to this, could not get themselves a job, and now they're being hired, and people are loving them. It's been really incredible to see,” he said.

mrc merch