Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and Lieutenant Governor Adam Gregg were in Pella Thursday morning (8/1) to meet with apprentices at Vermeer Incorporated. The Governor has long supported apprentice programs of this type. She also touted Pella’s Career Academy, which allows students to work at Vermeer three hours a day during the school year and 40 hours a week during the summer. There are nine schools in Iowa that have work-based learning programs and Reynolds says seeing the Vermeer/ Pella partnership will make other school districts believers.
“I bet you anybody that came here and (saw) this will seriously come back to their school district and find a way to make it happen.”
One apprentice, Carson Reynolds—no relation to the Governor—graduated from Pella High this spring. He says he was planning to enlist in the Marines after graduation, but when his enlistment was delayed, he joined the apprenticeship program at Vermeer.
“I thought about it for a while and it figured to be the best option. It actually helps out with college, too, so that helped a lot. The pay wasn’t bad. And it’s just a lot of really great opportunities for being able to go through schooling and being able to work and just everything in general about it is just appealing.”
Carson Reynolds adds he’s now more likely to stay in Pella than he would have been had he joined the military. Governor Reynolds says keeping young people in Iowa is another benefit of the apprenticeship program.