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Federal grant funds new hospitality program to develop apprenticeships

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A new national program will help hospitality-related businesses establish apprenticeships to train and develop employees.

The National Restaurant Association Education Foundation and the American Hotel and Lodging Association received $1.8 million from the U.S. Department of Labor to help eligible applicants create programs to train employees specifically to work in their business, according to several websites.

The Hospitality Sector Registered Apprenticeship is described as the first national program for the hospitality industry. The aim of the program is for the private sector and public sector resources to work with hospitality employers in creating programs that will train employees on the job and through classroom instruction to work their way up the ladder with one company. The goal during the initial grant period is to train 450 people a year for manager positions during the next five years, according to the American Hotel and Lodging Association website.

Employers benefit by having a specialized workforce for their individual businesses and becoming eligible for federal training funds. The program is also meant to create recognized standards within the industry, increase productivity and improve the professionalism of those working for restaurants, hotels, clubs or other hospitality businesses.

Businesses can apply by asking for a consultation with representatives of the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation or the American Hotel and Lodging Association.

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According to the American Hotel and Lodging Association, for every dollar employers invest in apprenticeships, they receive a $1.47 return in increased productivity.

More information is available on the New Mexico Restaurant Association website, nmrestaurants.org.