Original Press Release
NAM and Skills USA Announce Alliance to Prepare More Students for Manufacturing Career Leadership
Press release date: June 29, 2007
WASHINGTON, DC, June 29, 2007 - A new national partnership to prepare more students for career leadership in advanced manufacturing and help meet the industry's growing need for highly-skilled employees was announced today by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), its Manufacturing Institute and SkillsUSA at the SkillsUSA Awards Ceremony in Kansas City, MO, before an audience of 14,000 students, parents, teachers, school administrators, government officials, business and labor officials.
"America can't compete without skilled workers," said John Engler, President and CEO of the NAM. "Our Dream It. Do It. manufacturing careers and economic development campaign is creating strong regional alliances to raise awareness among young people about manufacturing's high-paying and rewarding careers. The SkillsUSA network will enable us to reach more students directly in their schools with fun, hands-on programs that teach teamwork and other important workplace skills. Skills USA is a proven leader in teaching employability and leadership skills to students and a natural partner for our Dream It. Do It. campaign."
"This alliance is a clear sign that the NAM values career and technical education and its critical role in the country's economic success," said Tim Lawrence, Executive Director, SkillsUSA, at today's announcement ceremony. "The SkillsUSA association serves over 130 occupational areas, many of them in manufacturing. We have over 41 years of experience helping students learn employability skills. We look forward to working more closely with the manufacturing community to create mentoring programs and teach students across the country about career and personal success."
Nationally, the skilled worker shortage is reflected in the 2005 Skills Gap Report commissioned by the NAM and its Manufacturing Institute. The gap will increase with the retirement of the Baby Boom generation and rapidly advancing workplace technology. Among the findings of the 2005 Skills Gap Survey of manufacturers nationwide:
o Skills shortages are having a widespread impact on manufacturers' abilities to achieve production levels, increase productivity, and meet customer demands.
o More than 80 percent of respondents indicated that they are experiencing a shortage of qualified workers overall.
o Nearly half of all respondents indicated their current employees have inadequate basic employability skills such as attendance and work ethic.
SkillsUSA works with more than 285,000 students and teachers in over 5,000 affiliated schools and colleges, including nearly all career and technical centers nationwide.
"Only a handful of organizations is positioned to positively affect America's future skilled workforce. SkillsUSA is one of them. We are proud to partner with SkillsUSA to prepare the next generation of manufacturing entrepreneurs and leaders," said Phyllis Eisen, Senior Vice President, The Manufacturing Institute, at the announcement ceremony today.
The Manufacturing Institute is the research, education and workforce arm of the NAM, the nation's largest industrial trade association. The Institute's mission is to strengthen the manufacturing economy by increasing understanding and respect for U.S. manufacturing and creating and implementing human capital strategies. Visit www.dreamitdoit.com and nam.org/institute for more information.
SkillsUSA is a national nonprofit organization of students, teachers and industry, working together to ensure America has a skilled work force. SkillsUSA helps high school and college students enrolled in career and technical education programs to excel by teaching employability skills such as communication, problem solving and leadership in conjunction with their trade, technical and service occupations skills. It serves over 285,000 students and instructors annually in training programs in technical, skilled, and service occupations, including health occupations. Visit www.skillsusa.org for more information.
CONTACTS: LAURA NARVAIZ (NAM) 202/637-3104 PHYLLIS EISEN (NAM) 202/465-6085 cell TOM HOLDSWORTH (Skills USA) 703/737-0607