Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
The apprenticeship system is centuries old.
“It began in medieval days when people learned their skills and craft by being apprenticed to a mentor who was a skilled craftsman,” says Carol Kanayama, program officer in the Workforce Development Division of the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.
“In Switzerland even today, one-third of the youth go to four-year colleges and another two-thirds go into apprenticeships. And those two-thirds go into everything from finance and tourism to manufacturing – all kinds of different occupations,” she says. “And they begin their apprenticeships when they’re still in high school. They don’t have this period of searching for their life after high school.”