Rivian launches apprenticeship to train future Georgia plant staff

Recruits will complete a 24-month training regimen and then will work at Rivian’s future Georgia factory
A Rivian R1T truck is seen at a media event marking the opening of the company’s new showroom at Ponce City Market in Atlanta on Thursday, October 19, 2023. (Arvin Temkar / arvin.temkar@ajc.com)

Credit: arvin.temkar@ajc.com

Credit: arvin.temkar@ajc.com

A Rivian R1T truck is seen at a media event marking the opening of the company’s new showroom at Ponce City Market in Atlanta on Thursday, October 19, 2023. (Arvin Temkar / arvin.temkar@ajc.com)

Electric vehicle maker Rivian is launching a new apprenticeship program to train staff to work at the massive new factory it is building near Rutledge, an hour east of Atlanta.

The program announced Friday will put an initial group of recruits through 24 months of intensive training.

Trainees will attend local Georgia community colleges for the first six months of the program, before traveling to Rivian’s existing plant in Normal, Illinois, to complete another 12-18 months of on-the-job training. The company did not say how many apprentices it would accept in the program’s inaugural class.

Tuition for enrollees will be covered by Georgia’s HOPE career grants program, but Rivian will pick up the tab for any textbooks, materials and other “incremental expenses.” Participants will also be paid as maintenance technicians by Rivian while in the program, and once they have graduated, they will relocate to Georgia to work at the company’s forthcoming EV factory.

Rivian said last week that it will break ground on its Georgia plant early next year and begin production in 2026. The company has said it will employ 7,500 workers at the new factory, which will exclusively produce the company’s forthcoming crossover, known as the R2.

“We’re excited to launch this apprenticeship program as an important milestone toward launching our R2 manufacturing plant in Georgia,” Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe said in a statement. “Critical for the launch of this facility is to establish a pipeline of talent that will help us to hit the ground running once the facility is operational.”

Lt. Governor Burt Jones also cheered the company’s announcement.

“I think it is important for the state to partner with companies like Rivian to create critical job opportunities through initiatives like the apprenticeship program,” Jones said in a statement.

Cox Enterprises, the parent company of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, owns about a 4% stake in Rivian.

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