Kathleen recently wrote about how the economy is looking up, at least in the near term.
That may be good news for workers with a few years of experience under their belts, but how does that bode for today’s high-school kids, who face high unemployment, more competition to get into college and skyrocketing tuition if they get there?
The solution may be found in career fields such as construction, utilities, manufacturing and transportation, where some are forecasting a shortage of skilled workers in the coming years. The problem is vocational education has been stripped from most public schools, so kids may not be aware of all of their options.
Fortunately, local industry has stepped up to fill some of that gap with Pierce County Career Day, which will be held Wednesday at the Western Washington Fair Grounds in Puyallup. Now in its fourth year, the program has interactive exhibits that show students which technical skills are needed for trades such as construction. Kids also learn about internships, apprenticeships and training resources.
Dozens of local companies, unions, training programs and municipalities have stepped up to support the event. Some familiar names include the Washington Laborers-Employers Cooperation & Education Team, Tacoma Power, Puyallup Tribe of Indians, Clover Park Technical College, IBEW Local 76, AGC of Washington, Workforce Central, Pierce County, and the Washington State Building & Construction Trades.
More than 1,500 students are expected at this week’s event. For more information, check out Pierce County Construction Partnership’s website: www.buildingyourcareer.com.