National Apprenticeship Week, Nov. 11-17, is an opportunity to celebrate workers who are building where we live, work, learn, heal and play.

For decades, the U.S. construction industry has stood alone as a leader in leveraging both government-registered and industry-driven education platforms to recruit and educate the next generation of our workforce. ABC and the construction industry have created safe, innovative and effective skills education programs that prepare students and workers for the modern economy. ABC and its members are spending $1.6 billion annually to produce the highest skilled workforce using innovative and tried-and-true development programs. Family-sustaining careers are abundant in construction, thanks to hardworking men and women and industry-led education programs.


At ABC, we believe in building people through the merit shop philosophy: that projects and personal advancement should be awarded based on performance, skill and achievement. ABC has been setting the standard for safety, quality and integrity in the construction industry since 1950.

·         ABC estimates 440,000 construction workers need to be hired in 2019 alone to meet the current construction backlog, which stood at nine months in August 2019.

·         ABC’s all-of-the-above approach to workforce development has produced a network of ABC chapters and affiliates in 1,400 locations across the country that offer more than 800 apprenticeship, craft, safety and management education programs—including more than 300 U.S. Department of Labor-registered apprenticeship programs across 20 different occupations—to build the people who build America.

·         In July 2018, ABC signed President Trump’s “Pledge to America’s Worker,” committing to educate 500,000 construction workers over the next five years.



ABC contractor members spent $1.6 billion to educate their employees in 2018, up from $1.1 billion in 2013, according to the ABC 2019 Workforce Development Survey. The 45% increase in spending resulted in nearly twice as many course attendees—more than 980,000—receiving craft, leadership and safety education to advance their careers in commercial and industrial construction. In addition, the survey found:


The construction industry is full of opportunity for recent high school and college graduates, people interested in changing careers or a second chance at the American Dream.

o   At ABC, we don’t just build buildings — we build people.

o   The construction industry today provides lifelong learning opportunities. Americans have found fulfilling, family-supporting careers in construction for generations.

o   Construction provides an opportunity for a well-paying career, not just a job.

o   The barrier to entry in construction is minimal. A college degree is not a requirement to join the industry and the opportunities to grow, earn new credentials and move up through leadership is exceptional.

o   Construction is among the few industries where someone can enter the industry as an apprentice or trainee, earn a paycheck while training for their career, and receive a portable, industry-recognized credential that will further their career.

o   A 2015 survey found construction professionals are the happiest employees in the workforce. The report cited the opportunity to advance in the industry as a leading factor in employees finding satisfaction in their work.

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