Senator Collins Discusses Importance of Apprenticeships, Commends YCCC on Its Leadership in Preparing Students for Careers, in Keynote Address at Eggs & Issues Breakfast

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Wells, ME - U.S. Senator Susan Collins delivered the keynote address and took questions from members of the community on a wide variety of issues this morning at York County Community College’s (YCCC) Eggs & Issues Breakfast. The event, which was attended by more than 140 people, was held at the college’s main campus in Wells.

Senator Collins began her remarks by commending YCCC on its commitment to career-focused education, which prepares students to face the challenges of the global economy. She noted that YCCC has been a leader in cultivating partnerships with local employers, which benefits businesses as well as Mainers seeking to find employment or develop their skills.

“YCCC’s wide range of programs and their success in helping students achieve their goals are the result of the partnership forged between this school and area employers,” said Senator Collins. “An outstanding example of that partnership was seen this May, when 14 Pratt & Whitney employees completed the Apprenticeship Program and graduated from YCCC. As Pratt & Whitney expands its North Berwick production, this collaboration is critical in helping to develop the skilled workforce this valued Maine employer needs to advance the aviation industry and to enhance our national security, while providing great jobs right here in our State.”

Senator Collins has worked to foster these types of constructive partnerships and enhance our nation’s ability to train and educate workers. Earlier this year, she introduced the American Apprenticeship Act with Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), which would provide funding to states for tuition assistance programs for pre-apprenticeship and Registered Apprenticeship programs. Senator Collins also championed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which improved federal job training programs and encouraged collaboration between businesses, educational institutions, and workforce boards to help address the gap between the needs of employers and the skills of potential employees.

“From accounting to veterinary technology, with culinary arts, digital media, precision machining and so much more in between, YCCC’s diploma and certificate programs advance economic growth and workforce development,” remarked Senator Collins. “The people of Maine are proud of our community college system, and the reason is clear: students of all ages and backgrounds are finding affordable tuition and the skills they need to succeed.”

YCCC hosts the Eggs & Issues forum as part of its mission to help provide information and education about issues affecting York County and the State of Maine. Established in 1994, YCCC is one of seven community colleges in the Maine Community College System. The college annually enrolls nearly 3,000 students in certificate and associate degree programs, continuing education, career & professional development, and business training.