Work-Based Learning

A-B Tech Work-Based Learning

Components of Work-Based learning (WBL) include internships, special projects, mentoring, pre-apprenticeship, hybrid, and registered apprenticeships. In addition, we help industry partners and students connect for that “direct hire” need.

Work-Based learning components help to ensure a well-skilled pipeline for growing industries. Outside of contributing to local and regional economies, these components provide students and graduates with a lifelong ability to support themselves and their families.

Work-Based Learning (WBL) is an academic course blending classroom learning with practical work experience related to your field of study. This occurs over the course of a semester and college credit is earned.

  • Internship is a non-credit work experience allowing students and recent graduates to gain experience in their field.
  • Special Project is a short- or long-term project allowing a student or graduate to enhance their portfolio.
  • Pre-Apprenticeship is a program designed to prepare individuals to enter and succeed in a Registered Apprenticeship and has a documented partnership with a Registered Apprenticeship.
  • Apprenticeship is a system of work-based learning designed to meet an employer’s needs by providing the employee with structured on-the-job learning and job-related education.

    Connecting students to potential employers and investing in Work-Based Learning (WBL) opportunities are critical to strengthening the state's workforce. The number one requirement for businesses in NC right now, is skilled, educated talent. In a time when we have suffered setbacks due to the pandemic, companies are having difficulty finding employees with the necessary skills or desired level of competency-specific knowledge. Many are turning to Registered Apprenticeships.

    Apprenticeship offers students a great advantage in the job market. Apprenticeships are built to fit the exact hiring needs of employers. A registered apprenticeship means a training that combines instruction at a worksite during paid employment with classroom education that culminates in an industry-recognized credential.

    A-B Tech collaborates with ApprenticeshipNC and the local industry to expand WBL opportunities for our students, business, and industry partners.


View the ApprenticeshipNC Brochure


For more information contact: Debbie Cromwell at or call (828) 398-7603.


*NC Community Colleges began using the term “Work-based Learning” (WBL) rather than Cooperative Education (co-op) in fall 2014.