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Zurich North America was recently selected as an apprenticeship ambassador by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), according to a press release.
The selection was in recognition of Zurich's apprenticeship program, which offers people with a variety of backgrounds and experiences to launch careers in the insurance industry while earning a college degree.
The DOL's Apprenticeship Ambassador Initiative is a nationwide effort to form a network of individuals and bodies such as employers, labor organizations and industry associations to serve as examples of the benefits of expanding Registered Apprenticeship Programs (RAP).
The release states that Zurich's designation as an apprenticeship ambassador is due to the DOL recognizing its efforts to diversify, modernize and expand Registered Apprenticeships nationally. As a part of the designation, Zurich will support the DOL's goals of increasing and strengthening the equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility of RAPs. The Zurich Apprenticeship Program became the first RAP in the insurance industry in 2016, and has tripled in size since then. In 2017, the company co-founded the Chicago Apprenticeship Network with Non and Accenture, which has aided multiple companies in creating their own apprenticeship programs. Zurich also hosts the annual National Apprenticeship Week Summit in its Chicago suburban headquarters, with a virtual attendance option available since 2019.
"We look forward to serving as an apprenticeship ambassador," Zurich North America HR Business Partners Head Al Crook said. "We believe that apprenticeships are going to become more critical in increasing access to debt-free degrees and in developing skilled workers across industries. We also believe every business and every function has apprenticeable work."