Get Your ApprenticeSHIP Sailing!

On August 26, 2021, Monterey Bay Economic Partnership (MBEP) and the Santa Cruz County Business Council (SCCBC) set sail with Adele Burnes, the Bay Area Community Colleges Consortium Regional Director of Apprenticeships, to discuss the transformative power of apprenticeships, view presentation here! Lending to the conversation were representatives from two existing programs, Terri Oropeza from Cabrillo College’s Computer and Information Systems Internships and Work Experience program, and Rosie Armstrong from Hartnell College’s Workforce Development Department, Tri-County Electrical Joint Apprenticeship.

This event allowed members from both MBEP and SCCBC to explore the option for apprenticeships in our region – What does that look like today? How could we expand on this training model to improve the workforce talent pipeline? What is the average timeline for setting up an apprenticeship program? How could an initial investment of time in building out an apprenticeship program pay off in the long term? These are just some of the questions we explored in this members-only event (view the recording here – closed Q&A and discussion).  With several funding opportunities and Governor Gavin Newsom’s goal of establishing 500,000 earn-and-learn apprenticeships by 2029, now is the time for employers to create new and customized talent pipelines that are accessible and equitable.

If you would like to discuss further, please feel free to contact Hayley Mears, MBEP’s Workforce Development Program Manager, hmears@mbep.biz, or Emily Ham, SCCBC Executive Director, emily@sccbusinesscouncil.com.

Event Hosts

Adele Burnes

Regional Director of Apprenticeships, Bay Area Community College Consortium

Adele Burnes has spent her career in workforce development and economic empowerment. She has worked on this important issue from many angles including government policy work, tech startups to develop startup ecosystems, and leading strategy and operations for Year Up Bay Area, the most effective workforce development program ever measured in the US. Today she is the Regional Director of Apprenticeship, for the Bay Area Community College Consortium where she is both assisting the educational systems in the Bay Area to expand apprenticeships and also representing the Bay Region in a statewide conversation about the future of apprenticeship.

Terri Oropeza

CIS Faculty | Internships and Work Experience, Cabrillo College

Terri Oropeza has been part of the Cabrillo College Computer and Information Systems (CIS) faculty since January 2018.  In addition to teaching “Tech Support as a Profession” she works with students by providing assistance with any part of the process for finding and applying for IT Apprenticeships, internships and work experience, or getting credit through the Cooperative Work Experience Education program. Terri has worked in technology since 1985 as the Founder/Owner of a pioneer desktop publishing company and Senior IT Manager at Synopsys Inc. for 23 years. She has been part of the HDI Service Management and Technical Support Professional Association since 2000 and currently serves as President of the San Francisco Bay Area Local Chapter. Terri has a Bachelor of Science and Teaching Credential from San Jose State University.
Cabrillo College has a US Department of Labor registered apprenticeship standard and partners with regional employers to provide opportunities for students pursuing careers in Technical Support, Cybersecurity, and Web Development. Students get practical, on-the-job experience that leads them to a rewarding career, and the employer gets quality talent in an area that is traditionally difficult for direct hires. And because the employer has made an investment in them, they stick around longer.


Rosie Armstrong

Director of Workforce Development: Agriculture and Healthcare Sector Partnerships | Office of Institutional Advancement , Hartnell College

Rosie Armstrong is a workforce development director with Hartnell College and has worked in the community college system for over 15 years. Rosie’s experience has led her to the opportunity to collaborate with multiple departments, community-based organizations, and industry champions with a common vision around student success and regional economic prosperity.

About Hartnell’s Electrical Apprenticeship program

The five-year electrical construction apprenticeship program with the Tri-County Electrical Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee is accredited through Hartnell College and is driven by its CTE and Workforce Development department. The program serves as a testament to the region’s collaboration and is both State and federally approved. The apprenticeship program is designed to train people with little or no prior knowledge of the electrical craft or trade with classes held twice a week during the school year at the Training Center in Castroville. The program consists of 10 semesters of related supplemental instruction and a minimum of 8,000 hours of on-the-job training.