RAP Program Off and Running

August 13, 2021

CCC and CNH Industrial personnel for photo.Central Community College is launching the Registered Apprentice Program (RAP) and the first two businesses have signed on.

CNH Industrial in Grand Island inked the agreement on Aug. 6 (pictured left) while Hastings-based A&E Electric made it official on Aug. 10 (pictured below).

RAP follows the “earn while you learn” model, which provides apprentices the opportunity to further their education and skills development while supporting themselves through employment. The combination of schooling and mentorship provided by the business means apprentices will learn all the skills needed to be successful in their chosen field. Upon graduating from CCC with an associate of applied science degree, the apprentices commit to working for their respective companies for two years.

“We are so excited to have CNH Industrial and A&E Electric as the first businesses to join the RAP program. Apprenticeships are a fast-track path to connecting career seekers, employers and education partners,” said Catrina Gray, CCC apprenticeship coordinator. “These businesses and their apprentices will build relationships to better prepare the apprentices for the workforce. Additional benefits include improved productivity, reduced turnover for the businesses and quality instruction from CCC faculty. I look forward to several more businesses joining the RAP program in the future as the return on investment can go far beyond the duration of the apprenticeship.”

Cooper Brehm of Grand Island, Elisha Carlson of Dannebrog and Justin Heston of Grand Island are the first CNH Industrial apprentices and all three are enrolled in CCC’s welding technology program. Brehm will also study advanced manufacturing design technology.

“We’ve been doing youth apprenticeships for two years now, so we’re really excited to expand and grow the adult apprentice and offer more opportunities to people in our community,” said Lisa Wilson, CNH Industrial plant human resources manager.

CCC and A&E Electric personnel for photo.Corban Jernigan of Hastings is A&E’s apprentice, and he will be in CCC’s electrical technology program.

“I’m glad Corban is doing this program,” said A&E co-owner Zach Adams. “This will help him with the book part of it while being in the field learning on-the-job training too.”

CCC will also play an important role in making sure all apprentices meet U.S. Department of Labor requirements.

“CCC is very excited to be the first community college in the state of Nebraska to start adult registered apprenticeship programs,” said CCC-Hastings President Dr. Jerry Wallace, who also oversees the college’s skilled and technical sciences programs. “The Department of Labor has done a great job helping us better serve the businesses by establishing apprenticeships. CCC wants to grow apprenticeships to connect students to employers throughout our 25-county service area.”

CCC is now looking for a business in Columbus to join the RAP program.