Businesses in Michigan are having a hard time finding skilled workers. The state will have more than 811,000 high-demand careers available by 2024 and the talent gap continues to grow. The people to fill those positions could have potential earnings of $49.09 billion.
The Marshall Plan for Talent was developed as a partnership between educators and employers to provide the education businesses need to develop a talented workforce in the state. The $100 million investment aims to redesign the educational system in order to provide career pathways to students from elementary school through secondary schools like college or trade schools, giving them options in areas they enjoy and cultivating those talents.
Saginaw ISD Director of Career and Technical Education Jennifer Geno says the plan will help communities produce students ready for those careers.
“They can come out of high school and earn a lot of these credentials that way, through high school programs, through career and technical education (or) through dual enrollment.”
Geno says there needs to be a cultural shift in how we think about education, changing traditional models for competency based models which improve a student’s chance of success and reduces the debt of secondary education, which is often a barrier for many students seeking to further their education.
The Saginaw ISD has formed a partnership with school districts in Muskegon County to increase resources for producing talented workers the state needs over the next decade. The M-46 Talent Consortium was developed after officials in both counties discovered similarities in demographics, educational needs, poverty and so on.
Geno says sharing those resources is a smarter way of dealing with both county’s similar issues.
“This is a way for us to partner collaboratively, share resources, get more done with less in less time and be able to take best practices.”
Schools around the state have about five years to fully implement their models under the plan. About $59 million is available in grants based on innovation, strength of business and education partnerships and evolving educational models.