On Tuesday, the House Education and Workforce Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training hosted a field hearing in South Carolina, “Reviving Our Economy: The Role of Higher Education in Job Growth and Development.” The hearing featured two panel discussions: The first examined the local economy and job opportunities, and the second focused on the ability of higher education institutions to successfully prepare graduates to join the workforce.
During the second panel, Dr. Keith Miller, President of Greenville Technical College, spoke about the importance of partnerships between education and employers to ensure economic success. His college is working with employers to bridge the skills gaps that exist industries such as manufacturing, healthcare, and IT. Dr. Miller encouraged members to support WIA funding and talked about the benefit of dual enrollment programs. While he did not speak about Perkins specifically, it is important that the subcommittee heard about the skills gaps that exist and the need to train workers to fill existing jobs. Hearing this message from constituents reinforces the message that we take the Hill with us – that Perkins funding and CTE programs are the key drivers in training these workers and closing the skills gap.