Fixing the STEM Worker Shortage

Monday, August 08, 2016

Main News Photo

By Site Selection Magazine

If you ask any manager at a technical company, "What is the hardest thing to find?" the answer you are most likely to hear is this: "Enough highly skilled workers who can do the jobs we need to fill."

Job-hiring experts who gathered at the World Forum for FDI in San Diego earlier this year agreed that, when it comes to training and equipping the STEM workers of the future, America’s educational systems need to improve significantly.

“Education has to change,” said Michael Cunningham, chancellor and president of National University in San Diego. “Universities haven’t changed like the rest of the world. The rapid pace of change is getting ever faster. The adult student population is growing. Adult learners need to retool. Businesses and universities need to come together to figure out the competencies that are needed now and for the next 20 years.”

The rest of “The Coming Workforce Development Storm” panel, which was moderated by noted speaker and TV personality Ali Velshi, agreed. “We need a better system for preparing the workforce in high-tech fields,” said Mark Mahboubi, president of R&B Machine Inc., an Upland, California–based company that makes components for communications satellites. “Large companies like Lockheed Martin tend to get the STEM workers they need while smaller employers like me have to be more resourceful to find the engineers and rocket scientists that we need.”

The session, sponsored by the San Bernardino County Economic Development Agency, focused on workforce development solutions for growing companies.

Lee Matthews, plant manager for Sage Automotive Interiors in Greenville, South Carolina, said, “We work directly with the community colleges in South Carolina to set up mechatronics programs that are tailored to meet our needs. We are paying these students while they are still in school. It helps bridge the skills gap that does exist.”

Click here for the full story!

Category: Site Selection Magazine, News

Fast Fact Image

“As the smaller chamber operating in the shadow of a larger, very aggressive one nearby, the North Myrtle Beach Chamber committed to take its game to the next level.  You and the NCDS team not only drove the creation of a bold new multi-year strategy, you generated buy in and a huge boost in revenue.  A great side benefit of launching and funding a new initiative was NCDS’ identification and engagement of a cadre of new leaders who had never really participated, much less invested at significant levels.  Your methodology works, and your experience in hundreds of other communities paid off for us in a major way.  So much so, we plan to kick off the next multi-year campaign this year.   In my book, NCDS remains the ‘gold standard’ for community development fundraising.”

Marc Jordan, CCE, President & CEO • North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce Convention & Visitors Bureau

National Community Development Services, Inc.
6300 Powers Ferry Road, Suite 600-165
Atlanta, GA  30339
Phone: (404) 231-0730