skills Archives - Shopfloor

Companies Work to Train Veterans for New Careers

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Manufacturers throughout the country continue to struggle to find highly skilled workers to meet the needs of today’s manufacturing jobs. Companies and organizations such as the NAM’s affiliate, The Manufacturing Institute, are working on programs to help get workers the skills they need to succeed in advanced manufacturing.  

Last week SAP Americas launched a new program called Veterans to Work which will train and certify U.S. veterans on database and technology, analytics and enterprise mobility solutions. The company’s goal is to provide 1,000 veterans full scholarships over the next 12 months to help them launch new careers in IT.

“Our goal is not to find one-time jobs for veterans,” said Steve Lucas, executive vice president, Database & Technology, SAP. “We believe it is critical to provide deserving and qualified veterans the powerful technical tools they need to jump start a lifelong career in highly in-demand, innovative fields with significant potential for growth.”

This is great news for veterans looking to grow their skills for a career in a growing field. Earlier this fall several manufacturers teamed together with the Manufacturing Institute to form Get Skills to Work which is a collaborative program to join manufacturers and educators together to place veterans in long-term careers. It’s essential for our economy and the future of manufacturing that we continue to provide training to veterans and students to alleviate the shortage of skilled workers we currently face.

Education, Like Manufacturing, a Global Competition

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President Obama challenged students in his “Back to School” speech Tuesday and he put his challenge in the context of global competition. An important message, and not just for students…

More and more, the kinds of opportunities that are open to you are going to be determined by how far you go in school. The farther you go in school, the farther you’re going to go in life. And at a time when other countries are competing with us like never before, when students around the world in Beijing, China, or Bangalore, India, are working harder than ever, and doing better than ever, your success in school is not just going to determine your success, it’s going to determine America’s success in the 21st century.

Exactly so.

A Higher-Education Bubble? Tell it to the Zombies

By | Culture and Entertainment, Economy, Education and Training | 6 Comments

Whoever laid out page one of today’s Washington Post has a well-developed sense of humor by juxtaposition.

Is college worth the cost? Sure. Just look at the splendid offerings at the University of Baltimore, which include a course on zombies. Not only edifying, but something to highlight on your resume.

Over the last month or so, there’s been a big uptick in reporting and commentary on the “higher education bubble,” the contention that  universities and higher-ed systems have oversold their benefits even as the educations become unaffordable. It all seems so unsustainable, like the financial system that collapsed within the past few years.

The start of the new school year with student loans and visits to the bursar’s office stimulated some of the reporting, and President Obama has touted new laws that expand the federal government’s subsidies of college educations. And there’s a new book by Professor Andrew Hacker and Claudia Dreifus, “Higher Education: How Colleges Are Wasting Our Money and Failing Our Kids — and What We Can Do About It.”

At the same time, many manufacturers will tell you that there are plenty of good jobs — good careers — available to workers with even a modicum of technical ability and training.*

Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit has done a great job of chronicling the coverage, which you read by searching for “higher education bubble.” And George Leef of the Pope Center diligently follows the overselling of higher ed at the National Review blog, Phi Beta Cons.

* From an earlier Shopfloor post, citing comments from the owner of a Baltimore manufacturing company: “DREW GREENBLATT, PRESIDENT, MARLIN STEEL WIRE: We have a mismatch. We have people out there that are skilled and trained, let’s say, to work in a retail showroom or to work in a MacDonalds or a restaurant. They are not necessarily trained to be able to know what a radius is or to know how to read a tape measure or to know how to read a blueprint or know how to change a bearing, or a die set in a robot.”

But zombies, they know zombies!