Left to right on stage: NFI driver apprentice Maria Rodriquez; President Joe Biden; Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg (speaking), and former Acting Secretary of the Army Patrick Murphy.
President Joe Biden addressed multiple transportation issues and highlighted the successes the administration has made since the implementation of its “Trucking Action Plan” on Monday. Speaking from the White House lawn and flanked by two trucks, the President thanked drivers and praised industry partnerships. “All of you here today are people our economy should be built around because you all, you all are the people who literally make it run. That’s not hyperbole. You literally make it run,” Biden said.
After the meeting, FASTPORT Executive Director of Workforce Development Dave Harrison shared some of the tremendous accomplishments that have been made in the past 90 days. “We have created 102 new Truck Driving Apprenticeship Programs during the 90-Day Trucking Apprenticeship Challenge, exceeding our goal of 90 in 90 days. And we have more in the pipeline with another anticipated 77 registered apprenticeships approved shortly,” he added.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, former Acting Secretary of the Army Patrick Murphy, and NFI driver apprentice Maria Rodriquez all spoke about the benefits of trucking apprenticeship during the event. Secretary Buttigieg referred to the success of the program as a “90-day sprint to get these actions off the ground.”
“Registered Apprenticeships are a tremendous recruiting and retention tool for the transportation industry,” said FASTPORT’s Gena Mullenax, Director of Apprenticeship. “We understand the demand for new drivers, but we also know that this is about helping people. We are proud to announce that 574 new truck driver apprentices have been hired as a direct result of the 90-Day Trucking Apprenticeship Challenge,” she added.
In a release from the White House, FASTPORT’s work received additional praise. “The DOL partnered with FASTPORT to connect transitioning service members with apprenticeship and employment opportunities in the trucking industry,” and added, “Over 100 employers across trucking, food and grocery, and the oil and gas industries launched Registered Apprenticeship programs in 90 days.”
“I’m very proud of the work we are doing. Our Team has worked tirelessly to handle requests from 777 employers, industry and labor associations, education providers, intermediaries, career seekers and states, who want to explore DOL-approved Registered Apprenticeship,” said FASTPORT President Brad Bentley.
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