America's level of technical innovation is unmatched, but companies are consistently hampered in their efforts by the shortage of graduates with high levels of skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). To help meet this challenge, the White House announced a series of programs to help address the shortage of skilled employees. The actions include:
• TechHire. The existing TechHire initiative will be expanded to 50 communities and 600 employers. The TechHire program uses non-traditional training methods like bootcamps and online education to provide workers education and skills in advanced technology. The program brings together educational institutions and employers to match potential employees and their skills to open positions. Companies that focus on skills rather than a specific undergraduate degree will find that TechHire gives workers the skills they need to be productive and solve real-world, practical problems.
• Optional Practical Training. Top international students who come to the U.S. to study will be allowed to extend their stay to participate in temporary employment related to their area of study for up to 24 months. This lengthens the employment period from its former 17 months.
• Nation of Makers Initiative. As part of the Nation of Makers Initiative, the Department of Education has launched a Career and Technical Education Makeover Challenge to encourage high schools to create makerspaces where students develop technical skills through hands-on activities.
• Career and Technical Education Act. The Secretary of Education has asked Congress to reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career & Technical Education Act. This act emphasizes technical education and links between high school and post-secondary education.
More than half of the jobs open in the U.S. require technical skills. These recent White House actions will help Americans develop the skills needed to succeed in these positions, to the benefit of both employers and employees.
Although these programs will enhance Americans' technical skills and create many more potential technology workers, companies can't wait to fill their open positions. Working with a staffing agency like The Armada Group connects employers with an existing pool of highly trained technical professionals. Contact us to learn how our boutique staffing services match employers and employees for a successful working relationship.