This blog has featured numerous posts about the American manufacturing sector and the possibility of renewal. While much of the news is positive, there is still a lot that has to be done before the sector can truly reclaim some of its former strength.
For instance, before the manufacturing industry is able to grow, major players will need to know that they can expect younger individuals to show an interest in open jobs.
This can be a problem. The industry has experienced decline during the past several decades, and layoffs among existing manufacturing workers were not the only consequences. Future generations of workers saw their parents and grandparents lose their jobs, and decided that there was no future in manufacturing. Now, at a time when this might no longer be true, there simply aren't enough skilled individuals to fill open jobs.
"I think part of it is a misconception of what manufacturing looks like in 2014, and I think there's still a stigma about community colleges," Daniel Grigg, who recently hosted a career fair at Guilford Technical Community College in North Carolina, told the Washington Post. Grigg added that there are many open jobs in the industry that actually pay quite well, but not enough community college graduates to fill them.
There are certain areas of the country that have become particularly friendly to manufacturing as of late. Texas, for example, has low taxes and regulations and abundant energy, making it a perfect location for CNC machine shops and other factories. However, it is also important for these states to lead the way in training future generations to fill these jobs.