Roomkin, Myron
October 1972
ILR Review;Oct72, Vol. 26 Issue 1, p699
Academic Journal
The article presents the author's comment on the article "Minority Membership in Apprenticeship Programs in the Construction Trades." In his article Alex Maurizi hypothesizes that nonwhites tend to enter apprenticeship programs of short duration rather than those of longer length. Within a human capital framework, he argues, this pattern of minority participation exists for two reasons: first, nonwhites anticipate a shorter working life than whites, thus having a briefer time horizon over which to gain the benefits of their investment; and second, compared to whites, nonwhites have a higher subjective discount rate on future earnings, that is, a stronger preference for immediate earnings than whites. Maurizi tests this hypothesis for the state of Wisconsin, using a simple bivariate model, which regresses the proportion of minority participation in selected apprenticeship programs on the length of the program. A second test is conducted at the national level, using data on a different group of selected construction trades. On the basis of his results, Maurizi concludes that efforts should be made to reduce the length of apprenticeship programs as a means of attracting more black applicants.


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