The number of new apprenticeships in Montana in 2022 is on track to surpass the number for 2018, 2019, and 2020 combined, Gov. Greg Gianforte announced in a Wednesday press release.

Run by the Department of Labor & Industry, Montana’s Registered Apprenticeship program enables workers to receive paid, supervised, on-the-job training in more than 100 different occupations across Montana.

The program added nearly 700 new apprentices since Jan. 1, along with 60 new employer sponsors, with the press release from Gianforte’s office saying many of which were added following a rule change championed by the governor.

“A four-year college degree isn’t the path for everyone, and Montana needs more carpenters, plumbers, welders, and electricians,” Gov. Gianforte said at a construction site in Yellowstone County.

The rule change revised the previous supervisor to apprentice ratio of 2:1 to 1:2, allowing one journeyman to supervise two apprentices, while preserving workplace safety and training standards, per the release.

The governor’s office said the rule change made Montana more competitive with its neighbors, citing that Wyoming allows two apprentices to one supervisor, North Dakota allows three apprentices to one supervisor, and Idaho allows up to four apprentices to one supervisor.

“Montanans have more opportunities than ever before to learn a new skill and secure a great-paying job in an in-demand field. I encourage folks who are interested to explore the opportunities available to them,” Gianforte said in the release.