Members of the Iowa Business Council met this week with education officials as they seek to increase the number of available workers in the state. Elliott Smith is executive director of the organization.
Smith says the council, which consists of 20 of the largest companies in the state, "definitely has some needs in terms of a quality, highly-skilled workforce." He says council has some initiates in the education excellence and reform area they believe are needed to help fill the worker need.
Smith says the state has to start by improving education for all Iowans. He says they are trying to instill a more rigorous curricula in the state for K-12 students in the science and math areas. And he says they want to create more opportunities for graduates in areas where Iowa has a comparative advantage, in advance manufacturing, information and financial services, and the bioscience areas. Smith says they also want to do more with students in after high school.
Smith says they want to create more connections with high school and college graduates with internship opportunities at businesses of any size, including mentor programs that let them see the type of requirements there are for positions. Smith says they are looking to the future when there is a projected worker shortage in the state, and want to try and address it now. For more information, visit the Iowa Business Council’s website .