– In helping to connect job seekers to in-demand positions, Rep. Donna Oberlander (R-Clarion/Armstrong/Forest) this week voted in favor of a multi-bill Good Jobs for Pennsylvania package that would help match up interested students and individuals with the best training for their career paths.
“Employers are telling us they have open positions, but it has been difficult to find people with the right training and experience to fill these jobs,” said Oberlander. “The best part about these jobs is that they have family-sustaining wages, and they’re available throughout the Commonwealth. We need to fix that, and that’s what our Good Jobs for Pennsylvania package addresses.”
The bipartisan, career and technical education (CTE) package includes measures to address business and industry workforce shortages, strengthen educational partnerships with business and industry, increase access to CTE programs and alleviate misperceptions regarding CTE. The bills would address the skills gap and worker shortages faced by industries across the state, as well as enhance educational programs and access to those opportunities for workers of all ages.
As chairman of the House Majority Policy Committee, Oberlander and her colleagues visited several facilities across the state to learn more about apprentice and training programs and how those programs are educating the current and future workforce. Those programs included the operating engineer, construction and steamfitting trades in western Pennsylvania; health care, plastics and polymer engineering and engine manufacturing programs in Williamsport; and an international biomedical research leader and community college in Philadelphia.
“Our visits to these innovative programs shone a very bright light on the workforce opportunities that already exist here in Pennsylvania,” Oberlander explained. “Now, our job is to make sure these programs are seen as best practices so that others can replicate the success they’ve achieved. Our bill package, which now goes to the Senate, is part of our mission to strengthen our communities and ensure that those who want to thrive can access the best path to do so.”
This CTE package is part of the overall caucus agenda to enhance the workforce development system by helping students, under-employed and unemployed adults, as well as returning military veterans and others, enter fulfilling, family-sustaining careers.
Representative Donna Oberlander
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Jennifer Keaton