Skilled Trade News Conference
A series of videos designed to help students, parents, teachers, and guidance counselors understand the opportunities in skilled trades were announced by Governor Snyder and Mike Rowe, TV host and founder of mikeroweWORKS.
Rowe has collaborated with the Michigan Talent Investment Agency to produce six videos designed to engage middle and high school students and show them opportunities within the following industries:
- Tool & Die
- Information Technology
- Advanced Manufacturing
"Closing the skills gap is not about creating opportunity. It’s about making sure that people understand all of the opportunities that currently exist, said Mike Rowe. He also challenged the language frequently used to describe career paths, where “higher education” is distinguished from “alternative education” and implies that students must consider skilled trades a secondary choice.
In addition to Rowe’s videos, Tom Daldin, host of Under the Radar Michigan, is producing five videos targeting younger, elementary school students. These videos will inspire children as they think about what they want to do when they grow up by highlighting employees and jobs in the following industries:
- Food, agriculture and natural resources
- Design and art
- Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and information technology
Skilled trade jobs represent about one-third of Michigan’s employment base, with more than 8,300 jobs currently available. Attracting future talent and addressing perceptions is crucial as employers will continue to actively seek skilled talent to fill the projected 6,700 skilled trade job openings each year through 2022.
“Industries and employers that rely on skilled trade talent are facing a talent gap,” Snyder said. “This campaign strengthens our efforts to make Michigan the national leader in developing the talent employers are looking for, while providing our students with secure careers and high-paying jobs in growing and innovative industries in Michigan.”
Skilled trade jobs typically require education beyond high school, along with on-the-job training, but not a four-year degree. This includes jobs in health care (lab technicians, dental hygienists), maintenance and repair, public safety, manufacturing (machine operators, welders), and carpentry, plumbing and electrical work.