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July 2016
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July 2016
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Closing the Skills Gap Through Educational Partnerships
Monday, July 18, 2016

To bridge the skills gap and get the next generation of manufacturers interested in industry, one Arizona high school has partnered with a local maker of airplane parts to get students involved in hands-on training. The manufacturer was in need of skilled workers, and the teens have been certified by a national manufacturing association to work in the high school’s lab after class and during the summer on oil assembly pieces for passenger jets. The students are part of a national club called Skills USA, and the money they earn goes into a fund to bankroll scholarships, as well as trips to conferences, competitions, and events. “Instead of students trying to find any entry-level job, [they have] a career pathway they can build on,” said Kathy Prather, director of career and technical education at Sunnyside Unified School District in Tucson. “It’s life changing because they see that pathway.” The high school, called Desert View, is among a growing number of schools across the country revamping their career training programs by adding more manufacturing classes. 

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