INDIANAPOLIS – Ivy Tech Community College and the Indiana Building Contractors Alliance (IBCA) honored the 10,000th apprenticeship degree graduate today at the Indiana Statehouse.
As part of IBCA’s Indiana Contractor Day at the Statehouse, both the IBCA and Ivy Tech recognized Jeffrey Russell as the 10,000th apprenticeship degree graduate. Russell, an Electrician, is a member of IBEW Local #481. He completed his 5-year electrical apprenticeship and earned his Associate of Applied Science degree magna cum laude in December 2014. He is a first-generation college student and is currently employed at Miller Eads.
Ivy Tech began a pilot Associate of Applied Science degree program in 1993 with four apprenticeship programs and has since expanded the program to partner with 15 trades at 62 sites. Currently, there are 4,262 apprenticeship students enrolled at Ivy Tech.
“We are very proud to be recognizing the college’s 10,000th apprenticeship graduate. Our apprenticeship programs increase the number of skilled workers and prepare these workers for the ever changing demands of the job market,” said Teresa Hess, Executive Director of Apprenticeship Studies at Ivy Tech. “Our training encourages job retention and expansion that will in turn increase overall personal income and job security for Hoosier workers.”
Since 1993, Ivy Tech Community College has worked in partnership with IBCA Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committees, Indiana Commission for Higher Education, Indiana Department of Workforce Development, and the US Department of Labor/Office of Apprenticeship to create a national model on how institutions of higher education and apprenticeship programs can work together.
President Barack Obama even acknowledged the important role Ivy Tech plays in providing apprenticeships and career pathways when he addressed an audience at Ivy Tech Community College during a Town Hall Meeting on February 6. The President stated, “Right here, at this school — one of the best in the country, not just in the state of Indiana — you’re finding ways to raise graduation rates, and partner with businesses to help provide apprenticeships and other pathways to careers that pay well in fields like construction and technology.”
For twenty years, the Building Trades apprenticeship degree program has prepared countless numbers of participants for successful careers in the union construction industry. Combining the strengths of higher education and the apprenticeship programs leads to incomparable educational outcomes. The program provides for an educational path of upward mobility that benefits all involved.
“Indiana has a strong construction industry business base representing both small and large businesses,” said Michelle Boyd, Executive Director of the Indiana Building Contractors Alliance. “Together, these businesses invest more than $42 million a year in apprenticeship training throughout the state of Indiana. This apprenticeship training program gives us yet another platform to show the important role a robust construction industry plays in our economy.”
Ivy Tech Community College is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system serving nearly 200,000 students annually. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.