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Recognition, Not Revelation
Could it be that our leaders in Washington are finally waking up to the fact that sustained domestic manufacturing is a good thing and one we should try to perpetuate? Here’s the news: On June 8, President Obama announced he is endorsing a manufacturing skills credentialing system to boost manufacturing jobs growth.
My e-mail box lit up like a Christmas tree with releases from various industry trade associations praising the president’s positive nod toward manufacturing and his acknowledgement of the fact that our educational system is failing to inspire, educate and provide the skill sets needed for 21st century manufacturing jobs. Here's a release I received from AMT-The Association For Manufacturing Technology.
It’s a good start. What the president seems to comprehend are the facts that manufacturers and their proxy trade associations and other industry bodies have been preaching for too many years: We need employees trained with applicable skills. There are jobs—lots of jobs—if the right people can be found.
Maybe the unemployment numbers and the fact that manufacturing has been leading the country out of recession have conspired to create an atmosphere that will finally listen. Frankly, I don’t care about the motive, but if the results can help advance domestic manufacturing I’m for it.
The infrastructure for this training initiative already exists. What the president has done is shine a light on the need and endorse use of means at hand to accomplish the task of training a 21st century workforce. I see more of a case of recognition than revelation.