Feds give nod to NBFAA apprenticeship program

Thursday, October 26, 2006

NEW YORK--With a Department of Labor stamp of approval in hand, National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association president George Gunning announced here at ISC East that the trade association has cleared the first hurdle toward establishing a national apprenticeship program which will enable the industry to recruit, train and retain the very best technicians from a competitive labor pool.
Specifically, Gunning announced Oct. 24 that the Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship approved the NBFAA National Guidelines for Apprenticeship Standards for the occupation of Fire/Life Safety and Electronic Security Installer.
State NBFAA chapters will use the newly approved standards to develop local apprenticeship programs. The standards define curriculum, the work experience processes, and provide definitions of the responsibility of the employer, apprentice and program sponsor.
"The next step will be a big one," Gunning said. The NBFAA will now work with the National Training School and state chapters to create administrative and delivery systems to make apprenticeships accessible to technicians in every state.
Gunning told Security Systems News this summer that he hoped to get the program off the ground in time for this week's trade show. (See "George Gunning to lead" in the September issue of Security Systems News.)
The apprenticeship program is modeled on a similar training and education program developed by the California Alarm Association and California Automatic Fire Alarm Association and put in place in that state in the last five years. The California program now offers classroom training. The group is in the process of developing a comprehensive online and distance learning component.