WASHINGTON — The Siemens Foundation congratulates Indiana, Iowa, Montana, New Hampshire, Utah and Washington on being selected as participants of a project to identify effective work-based learning models and scale them as a critical component of state efforts to educate and train young adults for STEM middle-skill careers. The project is part of its recently announced partnership with the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center).
To support development and implementation of the project plan, each state will receive a grant of $100,000 and intensive technical assistance, including national meetings, a cross-state peer learning network, and access to national experts, regular coaching calls and site visits. In addition, each state will develop an assessment plan to measure progress toward key indicators of success.
“The Siemens Foundation is excited about its new focus on STEM technical skills. This partnership is a great example of the public and private sectors working together to develop an approach that equips young adults with skills and work experience tied to the demands of today’s workplace,” explained David Etzwiler, CEO of the Siemens Foundation. “Work-based learning is a critical component of comprehensive state education and training systems that ensures a strong talent pipeline for thriving industries and more successful career pathways for our young people.”
The Siemens Foundation recently launched its STEM Middle-Skill Initiative, devoting millions of dollars to advancing the development of the essential technical skills needed for high-growth careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. These occupations, often referred to as middle-skill, typically require strong technical skills and a two-year degree, occupational license, or certification. Such jobs, particularly in high-demand STEM fields, often pay salaries upwards of $50,000 after two years or less of higher education. The Foundation’s work is focusing on helping young adults in the U.S. understand the potential of these careers and access the education and training necessary to attain them.
“Middle-skill STEM education and training are critical elements in building and sustaining America’s workforce and economy,” said Siemens Foundation Chairman, Eric Spiegel. “The gap between the jobs being created in STEM industries including advanced manufacturing, energy, healthcare and information technology and the opportunity for many young people to pursue them is simply too large to ignore. Driving more STEM middle-skill development is a crucial factor in closing the opportunity gap and setting students on a path to a career.”
The Siemens Foundation is focusing on three core strategies in its STEM Middle-Skill Initiative:
- Partner with world class organizations to raise awareness about the opportunities available through STEM middle-skill jobs
- Promote a positive perception of STEM middle-skill career opportunities
- Identify and scale effective training models
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