The state may be at peak employment, but there are growing concerns about a shortage of workers in the skilled trades. An event Thursday in Indianapolis aims to address the gap by taking details about potential careers directly to educators. "Let’s Build Indiana" is a partnership among the Indiana Youth Institute and several business and work force organizations and will be held at the Indianapolis Electrical Training Institute. IYI Interim President Glenn Augustine was joined by Training Institute Director Jim Patterson on Inside INdiana Business Television and said not all career counselors are aware of the types of potentially high-paying career and training options available.
Impending, mass baby boomer retirements are expected to continue to create more openings in mechanical, engineering and other highly-trained fields. The Indiana Department of Workforce Development reports availabilities in production occupations will grow five percent over the next five years. Augustine says it’s important to let educators know that college may not be for every student and additional vocational training options, like those showcased at the September 24 event, could offer a pathway to great careers. "We’ve had such a push in Indiana and across the nation to get kids to go to college. That’s still a valuable idea, but for some, there are options available in these industries, the trades, advanced manufacturing, that offer good-paying jobs. Often times, they don’t have to go to college and incur debt."
Patterson says there are 60 training centers throughout the state offering apprenticeships in 15 different trades. He says last year alone, 5,000 people participated in the industry-funded training in Indiana. He says the total investment by the apprentice often only totals in the low thousands of dollars over the course of a four or five-year commitment, with the rest picked up by industry sources. Patterson says student also "earn while you learn," and upon completion, trained workers could soon earn around $65,000 a year with a full slate of benefits.
Let’s Build Indiana will be held Thursday, September 24 at the Indianapolis Electrical Training Institute at 1751 S. Lawndale Ave. You can connect to more information by clicking here.