February 9th, 2016, Washington, D.C. – The Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP) and the National Wireless Safety Alliance (NWSA) today announced that the organizations have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).
Both groups share the strategic objective of promoting skills development for telecommunications tower workers. “There is a natural synergy in the communication, coordination, and sharing of technical information between NWSA and TIRAP to ensure job position descriptions and requirements are consistent among the same positions,” reads the MOU.
TIRAP was established in 2014 as a public-private partnership between leading wireless infrastructure companies, industry associations, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The mission of the consortium is to develop apprenticeship programs and improve workplace quality, safety, address industry workforce needs, and provide workers with greater employment and advancement opportunities.
The NWSA is a 501 (c)6 non-profit organization created to provide national, ANSI accredited, assessments of knowledge and skills. This in turn will provide verifiable worker certification in order to enhance safety, reduce workplace risk, improve quality, encourage training, and recognize the skilled professionals who work on towers and other nonstandard structures. The assessments will serve to validate the training of communication tower workers regardless of their chosen training pathway.
“TIRAP and NWSA agree to work together toward the goal of developing one aligned body of knowledge with common titling based on input and coordination between both groups,” according to the MOU.
Scott Kisting, Senior Vice President at SABRE/MUTI Tower Service Co. and Chairman of the TIRAP Board of Directors, said the MOU ensures that the vital work being done by TIRAP and NWSA will complement and enhance each other and provide greater benefit to workers, employers and the industry and the communities they serve.
Kisting stated, “It is my hope that our industry will use this as a means to recognize the efforts of so many to pass knowledge of the standards and the safety requirements on to our new and existing workers. Through consistency, we will help ensure that safe and quality installs are improved on each site by working with NWSA to allow for a uniform titling of positions.”
Jim Tracy, CEO of Legacy Telecommunications Inc. and chairman of the NWSA Board of Directors, added “The NWSA looks forward to working together towards a single uniform set of standards that support industry wide efforts including the validation of all worker training by a nationally available and accredited practical assessment.”
About National Wireless Safety Alliance
NWSA is a non-profit organization that has been established to provide thorough, independent assessments of knowledge and skills and provide verifiable worker certification in order to enhance safety, reduce workplace risk, improve quality, encourage training, and recognize the skilled professionals who work on towers and other nonstandard structures. For more information, visit www.nws-a.org.
The Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP) is a joint venture of telecommunications companies, industry associations and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that develops DOL-credentialed apprenticeship programs available to qualified employers for the training and career development of the telecommunications workforce. The TIRAP’s mission is to partner with stakeholders to promote safety, enhance quality, and enable education and advancement opportunities in the telecommunications workforce that will meet network infrastructure build out needs. For more information, visit www.tirap.org.
Chuck Slagle (NWSA)
Roger Hughlett (TIRAP)