What is Oklahoma doing to fill the skills gap?

Oklahoma has more than 60,000 unfilled jobs, and about 18,000 are occupations deemed critical to growing Oklahoma’s economy.

Natalie Shirley, secretary of education and workforce development, said those occupations include nurses, engineers, teachers, computer programmers, chemists, accountants and truck drivers.

“We have a huge number of those jobs that are open and it will only get larger,” Shirley said.

State leaders are looking at a number of ways to fill that skills gap.

Click here to read Kathryn McNutt’s entire article published on the NewsOK website. 

What They’re Saying: Strengthening CTE Is a Win for Students and Communities

From technological advances to the expansion of the economy, today’s job market is significantly different from the one even just a few years ago. To help America’s students and workers gain the skills and knowledge they need to fill these in-demand, high-skilled jobs, Reps. Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (H.R. 2353). This bipartisan legislation, which the committee unanimously passed, includes a number of positive reforms to strengthen career and technical education programs (CTE) and help more Americans succeed in the workforce. But you don’t have to take our word for it…

Click here to read the remaining News & Opinion piece posted on the Education and the Workforce Commitee website. 

US tech titans urge Trump to tackle skills gap

President also hears how AI could help modernise government IT

America’s tech leaders spoke to President Donald Trump of the need to upskill US citizens to meet a growing demand for digital skills yesterday.

Meeting with his America Technology Roundtable yesterday, Trump sat next to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Microsoft chief Satya Nadella and Amazon boss Jeff Bezos as he outlined his aim to save $1 trillion over the next decade by upgrading government services.

“Our goal is to lead a sweeping transformation of the federal government’s technology that will deliver dramatically better services for citizens, stronger protection from cyber attacks,” he said.

“We’re embracing big change, bold thinking, and outsider perspectives to transform government and make it the way it should be, and at far less cost.”

Click here to read Joe Curtis’ complete article from the ITPro website. 

Wyoming Dept. of Education unveils new plan for CTE support

Wyoming teachers soon will have more support in offering career and technical education (CTE) to students.

The Wyoming Department of Education currently is implementing Wyoming Service Implementation Matrix Process and Log (WyoSIMPL), a new system to provide support and resources to career and technical education teachers and administrators.

Loralyn O’Kief, educational consultant in career and technical education for the Wyoming Department of Education, said, her team brought together representatives from the state’s 48 school districts, and used their input and data to better align the department’s support services, funding opportunities and professional development offerings.

Click here to read more about Wyoming’s improved CTE program by Kristine Galloway published on the Wyoming News website. 

Fighting the Workforce Skills Gap

The labor skills gap has become a contentious issue with no clear solution. But better understanding what exactly is happening is critical to eventually solving it.

Economists and policymakers have been in a fierce debate over how best to address the skills gap problem. Some have even argued the problem is overblown and possibly nonexistent. While the debate continues, many employers have been expressing great concern over their ability to get workers with the skills they need.

“We have all these jobs open, and we have all these people unemployed–where’s the disconnect?” Kristen Fyfe-Mills, the associate director of communications at the Association for Talent Development, told InsideSources. “Clearly there is something that is missing from the workforce.”

Click here to read Connor Wolf’s complete article from the InsideSources website.

Manufacturing A Future For The Next Generation Workforce

Today, the U.S. manufacturing industry faces many challenges, yet perhaps the most significant is the current — and growing — skills gap with six out of ten production positions going unfilled due to a talent shortage. Closing the gap is a priority, but it’s challenging given the magnitude of the problem — according to research from Deloitte, nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled in the next decade, and two million of those jobs are likely to go unfilled.

What is causing this gap? The primary factor is the significant increase in baby boomer retirements, as an estimated 2.7 million jobs will open as boomers continue to exit the workplace. Economic expansion will also play a role as 700,000 jobs will be created due to natural business growth.

Click here to identify the solutions Kylene Senk identifies in her piece published on the Manufacturing Business Technology website.

Explore new workforce tools for closing the soft skills gap in California

The New World of Work creates soft skills curriculum and digital badging

Through partnership with the Foundation for California Community Colleges, the New World of Work (NWoW) has developed digital badges for soft skills. A recent report published by Mozilla explained how evidence-based digital badges carry more clout, as they more effectively capture individuals’ skills, interests, and achievements than that listed on a traditional resume.

Since 2012, the NWoW has been building a bridge between education and employment by engaging employers, entrepreneurs, human resource professionals, students, and educators and developing a series of skills panels.

Click here to read more about the collaboration between education and industry written by Leah Grassini Moehle and published on the California Economic Summit website. 

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