ESAC 2024


State of the State

Vermont: State of the State

ESAC State Report 2024

Submitted by Cindy Robillard, Asst. Director of Workforce Development

Vermont Department of Labor

March 8, 2024


Apprentice Office Details


After some significant changes in the leadership of the Workforce Development Division of the VT Department of Labor in early 2023, Cindy Robillard, Assistant Direct of Workforce Development has been serving as the Apprenticeship Director. VDOL is in the final stages of hiring a permanent Apprenticeship Director who will come on board in March of 2024.  The Vermont Apprenticeship team will ultimately include the Director and two Program Support Technicians. Additionally, VDOL is building capacity within its Business Services Team to allow members of that team to provide core apprenticeship information to businesses as they support them with recruitment and training services.


Apprenticeship Program Updates


On July 1, 2023, Act 55 of 2023 took effect marking a significant milestone. This legislation brought about a modernization of Vermont’s Registered Apprenticeship system. It introduced fresh avenues for preparation programs and established a framework for recognizing prior experiences. Additionally, the law integrated protective measures to enhance diversity within apprentice populations. Moreover, Act 55 established the State Apprenticeship Advisory Board, a pivotal step among numerous other essential changes. These reforms were crucial to modernizing Vermont’s Registered Apprenticeship Program, an integral part of the National Apprenticeship System.



Yearly Average Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
# of Apprentices 1352 1176 1287 1355 1591
# of New Apprentices 203 99 164 207 341
# of Completions 181 36 12 65 68
# of Sponsors 119 135 131 104 101
# of New Sponsors 1.5 5 1









Vermont has five (5) Multi-Employer Sponsors that represent a total of 485 employer programs.



Key Initiatives


With Act 55 taking effect on July 1, 2023, much work has been done to create systems and processes for implementation.  Some areas of focus have been forming the Apprenticeship Advisory Board, convening key stakeholders to formalize Youth Apprenticeship in Vermont, and conducting a full review of the language of Act 55 to address Diversity, Equity, Including and Accessibility (DEIA) provisions.  We have identified the members of the Apprenticeship Advisory Board and anticipate that they will be appointed by the Governor and meet by the 2nd Quarter of 2024.  The Workforce Development Division submitted its Workforce Investment System & Registered Apprenticeship Program Annual Report to the Legislature in December, 2023.  More detailed information is available in that report.


In the past year, much effort has been placed on building capacity around the Registered Apprenticeship program. To reach expansion goals, it will take the entire workforce system to understand and explain the critical components of a Registered Apprenticeship when asked by employers/sponsors or aspiring apprentices. In May 0f 2023, VDOL collaborated with HireAbility (VR) to deliver a day-long training to front-line staff around the State, especially those focusing on providing services to employers. Some topics covered included an overview of the critical components of service delivery, including on-the-job training with mentoring by a master or journey worker, related training to deliver the theory needed in the occupation, and a well-defined wage schedule that increases with successful progression in the program.


Vermont state apprenticeship funding continues to be used to engage key partners; Vermont State University, Community College of Vermont, Associated Builder and Contractors of NH/VT and, Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children.  These partnerships support the expansion and administration of programs in Electrical and Plumbing, Commercial Craft Professional, Accounting Technician, Manufacturing Production Technician, Medical Assistant, Medical Records and Coders, Pharmacy Technicians and Child Development Specialist.  A new partnership has been formed with the Vermont Community Broadband Board to support the development of a Fiber Installer Apprenticeship Program.

Vermont is excited about the focus of the year #1 SAEF formula funding.  We are collaborating with the Vermont Agency of Education to develop, pilot and scale Educator Apprenticeship Pathways and build sustainable, statewide capacity to support Registered Apprenticeship Programs (RAP) for Educators as we work to grow and diversify the educator workforce in Vermont.


Notable Achievements

As Vermont actively advances Registered Apprenticeship as a valued training model, we are fortunate to initiate a distinctive partnership with the Republic of Austria. On November 14th, Governor Phil Scott signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Austria that outlines a cooperative, bilateral agreement to share expertise around apprenticeship models. This agreement allows VDOL to learn about the successful apprenticeship model in Austria, explore ways to adopt some promising practices, and generally partner on further expansion of apprenticeship, particularly in the advanced manufacturing sector.

To support this work in the manufacturing sector, we have also formed a new partnership with the Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) aimed at increasing Registered Apprenticeships in manufacturing.  As a key component of this collaboration, VMEC will take on the responsibility of serving as Vermont’s designated Registered Apprenticeship Technical Assistance Center for the manufacturing sector. This designation highlights VMEC’s dedication to offering support and guidance to manufacturers as they embark on the journey of Registered Apprenticeship.