The Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP) announced today that the Wireless Infrastructure Association (WIA) was selected to serve as National Sponsor for the program, and that TIRAP had secured approval for four additional credentialed occupations. TIRAP is a joint venture of telecommunications companies, industry associations and the U.S. Department of Labor that develops DOL-credentialed apprenticeship programs available to qualified employers for career development of the telecommunications workforce, focused on ensuring quality, enabling efficiency, while ensuring a safe working environment.
“Joining forces with WIA as a National Sponsor allows TIRAP to continue to lead the telecommunications industry and work to bridge efforts by the industry and the government in the pursuit of safe and productive workplaces for all,” said TIRAP Board Chairman Scott Kisting, Executive Vice President Proactive Telecommunications Solutions, LLC. “These new positions are especially exciting because for the first time in the credentialing process the government has taken input directly from the industry to ensure consistency in the requirements for these new positions.”
The new credentialed positions are:
- Telecommunications Antenna & Line Lead
- Telecommunications Antenna & Line Foreman
- Telecommunications Construction Lead
- Telecommunications Construction Foreman
“From the very beginning TIRAP has sought to communicate the requirements for positions to enable the industry to achieve a uniform set of skills,” Kisting added. “This common set of skills will allow for employers to seek and provide training designed to assist in the development of a quality, safe and efficient workforce. It is important to note that the industry is working together and it is through this teamwork and the uplifting of common position titles that the industry will continue to support the network of today while preparing for the deployment of the network of tomorrow. Many thanks to so many that were involved in the development of these positions, there are so many of you that have done so much by offering your time, talent and treasure to support others.”
WIA represents the businesses that develop, build, own and operate the nation’s wireless infrastructure. Members include wireless carriers, infrastructure providers, and professional services firms that collectively own and operate telecommunications facilities around the globe. WIA supports its diverse members and the entire wireless industry through advocacy, communications, events, and education.
“WIA and many of its members believe the apprenticeship model is ideal for the recruitment and career development our growing industry needs to meet the demand for a skilled and evolving workforce,” said Jonathan Adelstein, President and CEO of WIA. “WIA and TIRAP will work together to improve the wireless communications industry as it continues to grow, and provide the companies building our mobile networks with the trained professionals they need.”
As National Sponsor, WIA will coordinate the following activities with employers interested in registering an apprenticeship program with TIRAP:
- Development of the Registered Apprenticeship (RA) Program.
- Registration of RA Program with Federal/State Office of Apprenticeship (OA).
- Registration of Approved RA Program with Federal/State Agencies.
- Registration of Participating Employers into Approved RA Program.
- Registration of Participating Employer’s Apprentices.
- Monitoring of Participating Employer RA Programs.
- Monitoring of Participating Employer Apprentice(s).
- Reporting on RA Programs and RA Apprenticeships (State/Federal).
- Sharing of Training Best Practices with Industry.
TIRAP’s mission is to partner with industry stakeholders to promote safety, enhance quality, and enable education and advancement opportunities in the telecommunications workforce that will meet network infrastructure build out needs. Since its inception, TIRAP has outlined an Apprenticeship Framework and credentialed a total of seven occupations through DOL.
“By bringing together a diverse group of industry experts TIRAP has been able to develop apprenticeship programs that companies can implement voluntarily and provide telecommunications professionals quality education and on-the-job training,” said Kisting.
Members of TIRAP’s Executive Board include Scott Kisting, Executive Vice President of Proactive Telecommunications Solutions, LLC; Art Pregler, Director of National Mobility Systems for AT&T; Beau Aero, President and Founder of GME Supply; Dave Anthony, President and CEO of Shenandoah Tower Service; David Sams, Vice President of Risk Management of SBA Network Services, Inc.; James Walker Pontius, Director of Network Operations for US Cellular; Jonathan Adelstein, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Wireless Infrastructure Association; Laurie Gebhardt, HQ Director of Network Engineering & Operations Support for Verizon Wireless; Kelley Dunne, President and Co-Founder of Warriors 4 Wireless; Paul Roberts, Vice President of Compliance for American Tower Corp.; and Richard Cullum, Program Manager – Special Projects of Crown Castle. With support from Stephanie Brewer, Compliance Coordinator for MUTI-Sabre Industries and Deb Bennett, Apprenticeship Director for WIA.
Companies or organizations interested in learning more about apprenticeship programs administered by WIA on behalf of TIRAP, can contact Deb Bennett, Apprenticeship Director for WIA, directly at 703-739-0300 or firstname.lastname@example.org.