CAMDEN CITY, NJ (Nov. 15, 2020)-- – On Thursday, Congressman Donald Norcross (NJ-01) joined American Training Center, Cooper University Health Care and New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development officials virtually to celebrate National Apprenticeship Week and the induction of the first Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) Apprenticeship class in South Jersey.
“A registered apprenticeship program laid the foundation for me to go from construction work to Congress,” said Congressman Norcross, the only electrician in Congress. “American Training Center’s innovative programs provide students and workers the ability to pursue apprenticeship opportunities right here in South Jersey. These opportunities, including the new Medical Assistant Apprenticeship in partnership with Cooper University Health Care, train New Jersey’s highly-skilled workforce, connect local workers with stable, good-paying jobs and accelerate our economic recovery.”
“I have had the privilege to begin to get to know this first cohort, and they are a remarkable group of women who have stories of strength and courage,” said American Training Center President and Workforce Consultant Kim Rommen during the ceremony. “They were selected from a group of over 50 applicants, and they’ve already demonstrated an incredible level of ambition and determination to improve themselves and grow their careers, even during the hard times of a pandemic.”
“Cooper is thrilled to be the first employer in NJ to support the Medical Assistant Apprenticeship,” said Jennifer Moughan, Cooper University Health Care AVP of Human Resources. “We are beyond proud. The Apprentices, in this cohort, will be integral to the Cooper Health Care team - during their apprenticeship and in their future roles as Medical Assistants. Thank you to all of the partners who made this possible.”
“Apprenticeships build a pipeline of skilled workers and create a built-in model for succession planning,” NJ DOL Commissioner Rob Asaro-Angelo said at the event. “We know this model works, and there is almost no industry sector that can’t benefit from apprenticeships. It also opens the door for federal and state resources because we know that investing in a stronger, fairer economy is good for everyone.”
In September, Norcross voted to advance the National Apprenticeship Act of 2020, legislation that invests more than $3.5 billion to create nearly one million new apprenticeship opportunities over the next five years, through the House Education and Labor Committee. Norcross is a lead sponsor and author of the bill, which would make a historic investment in workforce training as the nation continues to face record-level unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Four pieces of Norcross’ sponsored legislation were included in the Committee’s passage of the bill, including the Apprenticeship Hubs Across America Act, the 21st Century Energy Workforce Act, the Offshore Wind Jobs and Opportunities Act and the PATH Act.