Superintendent's Message - Buckeye Proud!

Bob Alsept

 

Buckeye Career Center is working to meet your needs! We have a long history (40 years) of providing skilled workers needed by our local employers. We want to be seen as a reason to relocate or start businesses in Tuscarawas, Carroll, or Holmes Counties. We want to be part of the long-term economic revitalization for our area. All we need is you!

The demand for skilled workers is at an all-time high. According to USA Today, nearly 40% of all new jobs will require mid-level skills. What is a mid-level skill? A mid-level skill is one that requires a high school diploma and possibly some post-secondary training.  USA Today estimates that 2.5 million new jobs will be created in this skill set by 2017. This study reflects the skills required for new jobs. Our area has a second concern and that is replacing employees eligible to retire over the next five-years. Whether it is hiring a new employee or replacing a retiring one, the need for more skilled workers is great.

Our local Community Improvement Corporation, headed by Gary Little, has created a Workforce Development Committee. This committee is charged with connecting education and business to better serve our local employers. The common thread is a need for skilled workers who are drug free and have the "soft skills" to thrive in the workplace. A survey of local employers showed needs in manufacturing, business, and health fields. Increased employment needs in these areas create greater needs for employees in our human services areas. More jobs in Manufacturing, Health Care, Transportation, and Construction require more skilled workers in Landscaping, Cosmetology, and Meat Cutting. Each of Buckeye Career Center's 32 high school and 11 Adult Education programs train skilled workers to improve production or quality of life in this region. In addition to the hard skills needed, we provide all of our High School and Adult Education students with training in the "soft skills" needed to prosper in the workplace.

Why is Buckeye Career Center important? We teach the skills needed to fill the new jobs and replace the aging workforce. The more skilled workers we have, the more attractive we become to our current employers. A skilled workforce who understands the importance of Attendance, Attitude, Acceptance, Accountability, Appearance, Appreciation, and Ambition will give outside businesses incentive to relocate to our region. We will also make our area more viable for our current employers to maintain their presence in our region. A strong Buckeye Career Center can aid the economic growth of our area. We have been fortunate to increase our enrollment to 29% of the available juniors and seniors of our attendance area. That is an 8% increase in one year. Our local employers have been aggressive in their search for new employees. All of the available statistics show that the largest job growth is in the mid-level skill area. Our students are earning industry credentials that are recognized across our country, but we want to make sure that we can supply the needs of our local employers.

The last two weeks at Buckeye Career Center have been very busy. We have hosted sophomores from all of our local partner schools. We have had a higher percentage of students visiting our labs than we have had in the last five years. Our Partner Schools have helped us spread the word about the great need for skilled workers. Whether you are a high school student or adult, we have a program that will help you develop marketable skills. These skills will give you the opportunity for success. Not sure what skills you are interested in? Visit the website of Ohio Means Jobs at ohiomeansjobs.com. This site will help you explore careers through interest surveys and occupational searches. There is an entire section dedicated to students and their parents. The K-12 section will help each parent counsel their child on the career that best suits them. I hear many parents lament that their children will have to leave our region to find good jobs. This is not accurate!  We know that there are many good jobs in our regionIFyou have the proper skills and training. We have many graduates who have used their skills to land their first job. They have then used the Tuscarawas Campus of Kent State University to enhance their abilities. All of this is done in our community. Our area has to utilize the training resources we have in our own backyard to become more attractive. We want to train a skilled workforce that will allow our local employers to feel confident that we have homegrown workers who bring their "A" game every day. We know that a strong Buckeye Career Center will make our region a destination for success. If you need skills, we have them! Buckeye Proud!

 

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