A task force will meet later this week in Des Moines to discuss how to encourage more Iowans to go to college or get additional training.
Fewer than half of Iowa adults have a college degree or some sort of technical certification beyond a high school diploma.
“The main issue identified by Iowa’s employers today is finding enough qualified and skilled workers who are ready and able to work,” says Iowa Workforce Development director Beth Townsend, “many of which, as we’ve identified, require education and training beyond high school.”
Iowa’s governor recently set the goal of having 70 percent of Iowa’s workforce getting technical training or going to college after high school. Educators as well as business and labor leaders have agreed to serve on the new task force.
“The Future Ready Iowa Alliance initiative is something that we firmly believe is necessary in order to develop the workforce we are going to need in the next 10 years,” Townsend says.
The group will address particular concerns about how minorities, disabled Iowans and former prisoners are able to get the training they need to secure jobs in the future. The “Future Ready Iowa Alliance” will meet for the first time this Friday. The governor has asked this task force to come up with a “strategic plan” by October 31, 2017.