AAPA ACCELerate Graduate Honored During NAW Kick-Off Ceremony

The U.S. Department of Labor kicked off National Apprenticeship Week, November 13-19, 2023, by hosting apprenticeship graduates at U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) headquarters on Monday. Lourdes Zerquera-Ordonez, an AAPA ACCELerate DOL grant recipient and an A&P Mechanic apprentice graduate from AAR, Miami, FL, was invited to attend the special event. AAPA’s ACCELerate program Executive Director Barbara R. Murray also attended the event. Lourdes and other apprenticeship graduates — known as Apprenticeship Trailblazers — and their employer representatives, met with senior DOL leaders, and other “trailblazers” from across the United States.

During this gathering, apprentices had a chance to connect with fellow apprenticeship graduates, high-ranking Administration officials, leaders from the federal government, industry partners, and advocates for Registered Apprenticeship. Some told their stories in-person or via video interviews, sharing their perspectives on how Registered Apprenticeship increases opportunities for underserved communities and has impacted their personal and professional lives. As AT’s, these young people will bring awareness to other career seekers who may be interested in becoming apprentices.

Each day during NAW, ACCELerate will be honoring daily themes with highlights and information about its work and partner companies to promote and grow apprenticeship. For more information and to watch the kick-off video, visit NAW’s website(Pictured from left: Manny Lamarre, Senior Policy Advisor, U.S. Department of Labor; Dr. Miguel Cardona, Secretary of Education; Lourdes-Zerquera-Ordonez; and Julie Su, Acting Labor Secretary.)