4/1/13 - RMC and AARO project topic of article in the Austin American-Statesman

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An article by Dan Zehr, describing a collaborative report between the Austin Area Research Organization (AARO) and the Ray Marshall Center (RMC) was printed in the Austin American-Statesman on Easter Sunday. The Workforce Potential Project aims to connect non-degree holding laborers with jobs paying above $18/hr by offering degree and certificate programs.  In the article, Principal Investigator Dan O’Shea, explains that this group of workers deserves the opportunity for upward mobility; “we have a local supply, rather than depending on in-migrant workers, and that’s where a social equity piece comes back in – people who live here already are participating more equitably in the overall growth of the economy.”

Dr. Chris King, Director at RMC, explains that “...what we forget is most of the people that we need to be getting better jobs and better skills for are already in the workforce.” He goes on to explain, “you need a little nudge to get a few more credits and that credential – that’s low hanging fruit.”

The Workforce Potential Project also underlines the potential economic benefits that can result from pointed post-secondary educational programs, which deliver needed training in specific skill sets. By bringing some 30,000 workers into higher paying jobs, $122 million dollars of economic benefit will be generated by 2025.

The RMC and AARO produced a press release announcing the publication of this report.

Ray Marshall Center

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