Last week, Montana Governor Steve Bullock announced that a new grant was awarded to fund Montana businesses in an effort to expand apprenticeship programs.

“Montana Department of Labor’s red shirt apprenticeship program was just awarded a $1.3 million expansion grant to build infrastructure services in helping and educating both businesses and perspective apprentices about the importance of this time honored work base model,” said Montana Department of Labor and Industry Communications Director Jake Troyer.

Troyer says they already have plans for the funding and that it will be used for many different things.

“One of them is the expansion of apprenticeships in Indian Country and it is also going to increase our technical assistance capacity to business sponsors,” Troyer said. “We are going to use a portion of that funding to do an aggressive outreach program to businesses. Finally, we are going to be able to use a portion of this money to embed a Montana Registered Apprenticeship Program clearinghouse.”

According to Troyer, since two thousand the Montana Apprenticeship Program has worked with over 1000 business sponsors across the state and over 7000 apprentices. Currently, Montana has over 700 apprenticeship business sponsors in 60 occupations across the state.