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Local Software Company Launches Region’s First Application Developer Registered Apprenticeship Program

September 29, 2023

The Pesto Group CEO and two of the company's Application Developer Apprentices.

A first-of-its-kind apprenticeship program in northern Michigan will help a Petoskey based software company train its employees. The Pesto Group, in partnership with Northwest Michigan Works!, has launched a unique U.S. Department of Labor registered apprenticeship for Application Developer. 

Registered under the Northwest Michigan Works! U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) Standards of Apprenticeship, the Pesto Group is providing seven apprentices with 12 months of on-the-job learning along with a minimum of 200 hours of related education. The technical instruction is provided through a series of courses including the web development Ruby on Rails 7 curriculum.

The study plan complements the hands-on learning while providing an innovative, robust experience to expand the career pathways for the apprentices. Upon completion of the program, apprentices will earn the US Department of Labor National Occupational Credential.  

“The Pesto Group has partnered with Northwest Michigan Works! to develop our initial registered apprenticeship program, and is also grateful to the US Department of Labor for giving us the opportunity to address what we view as a fundamental concern with the status quo of STEM Education and Workforce Development,” said Jesse Raleigh, CEO, the Pesto Group. “We are pioneering a return to apprenticeship training within the Software Development spaces in developing a comprehensive program which we intend to expand for other employers through our non-profit entity, the Pesto Academy.”

Registered apprenticeships are developed through a partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor and are a proven training method for employers to build a talent pipeline of highly skilled, educated employees. Registered apprenticeships are offered in over 1300 occupations and can be designed for any size or type of business. Northwest Michigan Works! is a registered USDOL apprenticeship intermediary and sponsor. Northwest Michigan Works! helps employers develop, implement and manage registered apprenticeships specific to their industry. 

Northwest Michigan Works! is an essential resource for employers and job seekers in the Northern Michigan area.
- Kathy Stuart, Michigan Rubber Products Human Resource Manager