ESAC 2024


State of the State

Virginia: State of the State

Commonwealth of Virginia – State of the State Report for ESAC 2024

Governor Youngkin’s ‘Compete to Win’ plan to fundamentally transform the Commonwealth’s workforce became a reality on July 1, 2023, with the creation of the Virginia Department of Workforce Development and Advancement – what we call Virginia Works. This landmark legislation was a bipartisan effort to provide better services and training to Virginians, measure and perfect our programs, create more high-paying jobs, and enable the Commonwealth to better compete with other states.

In addition to the direct work of the agency, Virginia Works coordinates, communicates, and collaborates with nearly 80 workforce programs across state government. Since spring of 2023, we have been planning and executing the plan to successfully stand-up Virginia Works and establish the foundation for a stronger Virginia economy. The Division of Registered Apprenticeship, part of Virgina Works as of November 2023, is an essential component of our efforts to create, sustain, and retain a viable workforce that supports current and future businesses.

Grant Updates – Virginia’s Division of Registered Apprenticeship successfully reached projected goals on CRAFT State Expansion Grant Fund activities for the grant funded period ending on June 30, 2023. A total of 1,007 apprentices were registered and 342 of those were served with grant funded-related technical instruction and on-the-job training resources.

Effective July 1, 2023, the Virginia Division of Registered Apprenticeship was awarded full formula State Apprenticeship Expansion Grant for project HIRED (Highlight, Include, Recruit, Engage, Deliver) to build a strong Registered Apprenticeship program framework with statewide expansion and adoption of Registered Apprenticeship Programs. Project HIRED will facilitate the alignment of talent development partners, creating robust cross-communication systems, and expanding capacity to significantly increase registered apprenticeship opportunities for all Virginians, particularly underrepresented populations, seeking good-paying jobs.

Notable Achievements – During the fall of 2023, the Division of Registered Apprenticeship hosted the Alabama Office of Apprenticeship, their employer sponsors, and several deans of nursing programs for best practices/information sharing session with all 23 healthcare program administrators in the VCCS system. Our ongoing outreach and educational efforts resulted in a Registered Apprenticeship engagement with over 85 members of the Virginia Hospital and Health Care Association. These activities have expanded connections between our Registered Apprenticeship Field Consultants, existing and potential healthcare employer sponsors, and educational partners to cultivate registered apprenticeship opportunities across a broad spectrum of health care occupations.

Registered Apprenticeship staff convened an internal Clean Energy Workgroup to identify best practices and develop technical assistance to support employers including registered apprenticeship in occupations and industries affected by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). An emphasis on outreach and development to other key entities such as SHINE, Virginia Center for Energy Workforce Development, and the Southeastern Wind Coalition supported developing registered apprenticeship opportunities for the grant-funded target demographic populations in these segments.

Registered Apprenticeship presented to over 100 attendees at the annual Eastern Shore Tourism Summit. Additionally, webinar for local chambers of commerce and the Virginia Chamber of Commerce executives with representation from the National Restaurant Association Foundation and the American Hotel and Lodging Association helped promote our resources for developing registered apprenticeships in hospitality as tourism is one of the largest drivers of Virginia’s economy.


State Fiscal Year 2023 Data Points:
(July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023)

Number of Apprentices: 11,621

Number of New Apprentices:  4,986

Number of Completed Apprentices:  2,001

Number of Sponsors: 1,646

Number of New Sponsors: 218

Key Initiatives 2024 – Registered Apprenticeship is driving strategic partnerships to increase the number of intermediaries, seamlessly work with WIOA partners to expand apprenticeship opportunities, and use our data around the high-demand occupations list to address the needs of our business community.

Working with the VDOE, Registered Apprenticeship is supporting “Grow Your Own” programs in 28 schools across the Commonwealth. VDOE’s goal is 165 Registered Apprentice Teachers to be registered by May 2024. Registered Apprenticeship is offering employer incentive stipends to offset start-up costs for 40 apprentices.

Registered Apprenticeship is participating in the Governor’s Re-Entry Task Force to increase the number of returning citizens entering apprenticeships and gaining meaningful employment. Registered Apprenticeship is actively expanding apprenticeship programs within Virginia’s local and state government offices with a focus toward succession planning and talent development.

Expanded Capacity – Under Virginia Works, new capabilities and capacities will be added to complement registered apprenticeships including internships, work-based learning, and on-the-job training. Our goal is to offer alternatives to companies and industries where less than a year of on-the-job training is needed to fill their positions.

Upcoming Events – July 2024 Registered Apprenticeship and all the workforce development departments will relocate to our new headquarters office in the Richmond region.