Seal of Dane County County of Dane
County Executive's Office


May 10, 2018
Supervisor Chuck Erickson 608.212.8753
County Board

The Kassel-Dane Sister County Partnership will host an event that discusses the benefits of German style apprenticeship programs on Wednesday, May 30 at Goodman South Madison Library from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.


Manufacturers and other businesses across Dane County face major challenges due to a skilled workforce shortage. The educational pathways and traditional college programs may not generate the workforce needed in today’s diverse economy.


Dane County Board Supervisor Chuck Erickson said the event is a great opportunity for local businesses to learn how to find qualified people to fill their positions.


“Hosting this event is a chance for Dane County to create long-term benefits for both businesses and young adults interested in the apprenticeship program,” said Erickson, the chair of the Kassel-Dane Sister County Task Force.


The event will include a networking session, as well as a presentation about the benefits of German style apprenticeship programs by speaker Mario Kratsch, Vice President of the German American Chamber of Commerce of the Midwest and head of the ICATT Apprenticeship Program. It will also show opportunities for Dane County businesses to get involved. Manuel Merkt, president and COO of Hermle Machine Company LLC, and one of their apprentices will then discuss their experiences with the program.


Benefits to employers to employers include: reduced recruitment costs, training related to the company’s specific procedures, enhanced wage stability, and a stable supply of skilled workers. 


Register for the event at or contact the Office of the Dane County Board of Supervisors (608) 266-5758 for more information.




About Kassel-Dane County Partnership:
The Dane County-Kassel connection started in 2007 when the two counties entered into a formal Sister County Partnership. The agreement is designed to exchange ideas and build economic partnerships in areas like renewable energy, regional transportation systems, workforce training and continuing education.


About ICATT Apprenticeship Program:

The Industry Consortium for Advanced Technical Training (ICATT) is the only program in the Midwest fully benchmarked on the German Dual Education system. Now in its third year, the ICATT Apprenticeship Program helps U.S. manufacturers build a sustainable pipeline of talent while offering young adults a valid educational alternative to a high-cost, 4-year university program.