Registered Apprenticeships

Registered Apprenticeships

VESTA brings together employers and employees in WIN:WIN relationships.

VESTA is collaborating with industry associations, government agencies, colleges and universities, and related non-profit organizations to implement Registered Apprenticeships for vineyards and wineries, a unique and flexible employer-driven model that will enhance recruitment, advancement and retention of employees. 

Registered Apprenticeship Appendix A Documents

What is a Registered Apprenticeship?

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) established this unique, flexible training program that combines job specific On-the-Job Learning with Related Technical Instruction over 80 years ago. At the end of FY 2017:

There were 1,373 jobs approved for RAs, but there were only two for the grape and wine industry (GWI) – Wine Maker and Cellar Worker.

There were 533,607 active RAs throughout the country, but less than 20 for the GWI – all in Iowa and Michigan.

Key Components of Registered Apprenticeships

The Registered Apprenticeship program has five components that are essential to success for the employer and the apprentice.

  1. Business Involvement - Employers are the foundation of every Registered Apprenticeship program.
  2. Structured On-the-Job Learning (OJL) - Apprentices receive job specific training from an experienced Mentor for typically not less than one year.
  3. Related Technical Instruction (RTI) - Apprenticeships combine OJL with RTI at 2-year colleges.  RTI could be provided at a college, online, or at the job site.
  4. Reward for Skills Gain - Apprentices receive increases in wages as they gain higher level skills. 
  5. National Occupational Credential - Registered apprenticeship programs result in a nationally recognized certificate - a 100% guarantee to employers that apprentices are fully-qualified for the job.

Employer is the One Who

  • Determines the type of occupations, length of RA programs, and education and competencies needed
  • Determines qualifications for apprentices, wages, and hiring/firing conditions
  • Identifies sources of education and specific requirements for Related Technical Instruction
  • Hires the Apprentice
  • Awards credit for relevant prior education and experience
  • Provides On-the-Job Learning by pairing an Apprentice with a Mentor
  • Oversees progress of the On-the-Job Learning and Related Technical Instruction

Apprentice is a Full-time Employee Who

  • Participates in On-the-Job Learning – 2,000 hours of work annually
  • Participates in a recommended minimum of 144 hours of Related Technical Instruction
  • Receives wage increases commensurate with achieving competencies
  • Receives a nationally-recognized Certificate from the U.S. Department of Labor upon completion of a Registered Apprenticeship. 

For more information on Registered Apprenticeships for the Grape and Wine Industry, please contact:

Michelle Norgren-Brewer
VESTA Director
Office Phone – 417-837-2514


Missouri State University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action/Minority/Female/Veterans/Disability/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity Employer and Institution