Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb visited the Ethos Science Center in Elkhart today to outline his priorities for the upcoming legislative session. The 2018 Next Level Agenda is the Governor’s plan to help build Indiana’s workforce.
One of the governor’s top priorities is to fill more well paying and in demand jobs across the state. He said there’s about 92,000 jobs that are unfilled in the state alone, and about 29,000 more in the works that could remain unfilled if the state doesn’t address jobs training.
Holcomb wants to establish the Education to Career Pathway Cabinet to help assess needs at the local level and help schools provide more STEM-oriented education and vocational programs, providing students the alternative to a traditional four year college degree. On four year colleges, he said Indiana has some “world-class” universities that attract a lot of talent to the state.
The governor would also like to see an increase in outreach to veterans who are near the end of their service saying they are some of the most well-trained and regimented individuals that would be a great addition to any community.
“And this whole agenda is centered around connecting, not just high school students,” Holcomb said, “but our adults who are out there with the aspiration to skill themselves up to go up to that next rung.”
The governor said one of the main goals moving forward is to help the state connect to local communities, through programs such as the Regional Cities Initiative, which he touts as a success in Northern Indiana. Holcomb said another goal along these lines is expanding regional airport routes, citing the new routes from Indianapolis to France as an example of resource companies in the state could be taking advantage of.
Holcomb hopes through a collaborative effort Indiana can develop a workforce better prepared for jobs in a rapidly changing economy.