Pat Hobbs, executive director of Workforce Solutions Cameron, says public education policy for the last 30 years failed students.
Hobbs gave a presentation at South Texas College’s 13th annual Summit on College and Career Readiness. One of his key points was that a skills gap across the whole country exists due to poor career awareness counseling for the past 30 years.
“We’ve failed our students. We pushed students that didn’t have the resources to complete college and they didn’t graduate. That’s 60 percent of the thousands and thousands that we sent and ended up not graduating,” Hobbs said.
“Now, they’ve burned up their financial aid and have no means to go back and earn a skill set from a community college or TSTC. Now, they’re in the workforce and incapable of doing anything except manual labor.”
One way to turn this dynamic around is by doing a better job of career awareness and installing CTE (career technical education) programs for skill sets that are in high demand, Hobbs told the Rio Grande Guardian, in an exclusive interview after his presentation. This will allow the region to build a quality workforce to attract industries, he argued.