I’ve been asked quite a few times about the National Network of Business and Industry Associations. IREC was invited to join the National Network a year ago and I just got back from Austin where it celebrated its first-year anniversary. A few facts. This National Network goes way beyond the clean energy industry as many major business sectors participate – manufacturing, retail, healthcare, energy, construction, hospitality, transportation and information technology sectors.
The most direct measure of whether a training or educational program has market value is whether its graduates have the knowledge and skills required in the job market. Yet, a recently released Gallup poll sponsored by the Lumina Foundation indicates that only 11 percent of business leaders strongly agree that graduates of higher education programs have the skills and competencies that their business needs. This is a disturbing number. Clearly there needs to be a serious improvement in the linkage between business leaders and educational providers if the skills gap is going to be closed.