Folks worried about robots one day taking over our jobs can finally feel some relief. Last May, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos made a promise to hire 25,000 veterans and military spouses over the next five years. And the company is finally taking a huge step in fulfilling that.
On Thursday, the online retail giant announced its partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor to start an apprenticeship program that will provide paid, on-the-job training for tech careers at the company. Amazon will also train 10,000 more veterans in cloud computing skills as part of the Joining Forces Initiative, championed by Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden.
"We are pleased that Amazon is joining the remarkable group of forward-looking organizations that are pursuing innovations in apprenticeship for the 21st century," said the Obama administration's Deputy U.S. Secretary of Labor, Chris Lu, in a press release. "Partnerships like this one have reinvigorated our nation's apprenticeship system, creating opportunity and pathways to prosperity for hundreds of thousands of Americans that will last for years to come."
Amazon joins more than 200 other employers, colleges, and labor organizations (including Tesla, Ford, Nestlé, and the University of Michigan) that have signed on to the U.S. Department of Labor's ApprenticeshipUSA LEADERs program. In 2016, more than 206,000 workers obtained paid workplace learning positions. Currently, over 505,000 apprentices nationwide are training for skills needed in today's job market.