Workforce Business Development Award Nomination Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Workforce Business Development Award Nomination: Registered Apprenticeship (RA) Navigator Program

Contact Information of Individual Submitting Nomination

Nominator: Eileen Cipriani

Email Address:

Agency Name: Pennsylvania Dept of Labor and Industry


Registered Apprenticeship (RA) Navigator Program

PA Apprenticeship and Training Office in partnership with Keystone Development Partnership (KDP) have developed a Registered Apprenticeship (RA) Navigator program for workforce development intermediaries. This new RA program is designed to meet the growing demand by employers for apprenticeship training by preparing individuals to assist in starting and scaling up registered apprenticeship programs. RA Navigators help grow the apprenticeship ecosystem through regional partnerships and provide technical assistance to employers, unions, industry associations, community organizations, training providers, and the workforce system.

The competency-based program includes 2,000 hours of on-the-job training (OJT) plus 144 hours of Related Technical Instruction. The RTI is a blend of classroom instruction and online discussions. Penn State has partnered to provide 8 professional training modules relevant to apprenticeship program development, including Project Management. The first cohort of 20 apprentices began in September 2019 in Southeast PA, and KDP plans to expand the program into Central and Western PA in 2020.

Provide a statement of results, accomplishments, impacts, and any other appropriate information that demonstrates why the nominee's efforts described in question #1 were an exceptional contribution.Response (400 word limited).

The RA Navigator program is the first non-governmental workforce intermediary training of its kind in the US. In collaboration with the PA Apprenticeship and Training Office (ATO), KDP based the content of the work process on the US Department of Labor occupation of Apprenticeship Training Representative and modified the program for non-government intermediaries with a focus on assisting employers to sponsor apprenticeships. KDP plans to build on its initial success piloting the program in Southeast PA by replicating the RA Navigator program across the Commonwealth, training upwards of 60 RA Navigators by 2021. The goal is to develop a statewide Keystone Apprenticeship Alliance – a group of trained intermediaries able to help employers, unions, and government agencies across Pennsylvania to expand apprenticeship programs into new occupations and industries. The RA Navigator program provides a forum for intermediary organizations such as education providers, unions, and community groups to collaborate with PA CareerLink® (One Stop) Business Service Teams and Job Developers. KDP is also developing a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System to enable greater transparency and collaboration among the RA Navigators who are part of the statewide network. It will also improve tracking and reporting of activities that build the apprenticeship ecosystem.

Provide a brief description of the nominee's significant contributions in any one of the other two areas listed under "criteria" that you did not focus on above. (400 word limited).

Since 2001, the PA Department of Labor & Industry awarded KDP grants to develop Industry Partnerships in Public Transit, Manufacturing, Logistics and Transportation, and Building and Construction. Local Workforce Development Boards hire KDP to manage four Next Gen Sector Partnerships in the Advanced Manufacturing and Building and Construction industries. Since 2016, the PA Apprenticeships and Training Office (ATO), funded by federal State Apprenticeship Expansion grants, contracted KDP to promote Registered Apprenticeship (RA) as a workforce development strategy. Through its affiliation with the PA AFL- CIO, KDP promotes RA to manufacturing unions and their represented employers throughout the Commonwealth. This experience enabled KDP to manage federal projects such as the federally funded Next Gen: Industrial Manufacturing Technician Apprenticeship in 2015, and the AFL-CIO Working for America Institute Multi-Industry Intermediary contract with US Department of Labor starting in 2016. Starting in 2019, KDP, in collaboration with the PA ATO, is helping to develop RA in response to new opportunities created by a new natural gas processing plant in Southwest PA. In 2019, KDP supported the first Women in Non-Traditional Careers Institute in Pennsylvania in partnership with Chicago Women In Trades and the Philadelphia Works, Inc.


Examples of work 

PA - Keystone Development Partnership pt.1 2020.pdf (1.3MB)
PA - Keystone Development Partnership pt.2 2020.pdf (430.9KB)