The Indiana Chamber of Commerce’s education and workforce initiative promoting outstanding talent and a skilled workforce.

Postsecondary Pathways clearly paved in Batesville

“A healthy manufacturing environment in Indiana in large part determines the health of our state economically,” said Kim Ryan, president of Batesville Casket Company, at the Indiana Youth Institute Postsecondary Pathways event in Batesville last week. The Indiana Chamber was a co-sponsor.

Ryan enthusiastically encouraged educators in the room to share manufacturing opportunities with their students, and emphasized the importance of developing local talent in order for communities to keep critical employers. And she said employers play a large role in this effort by partnering with the local school system.

Batesville High School focuses on providing opportunities for students to learn outside the classroom with the help of local employers like Batesville Casket, Batesville Tool & Die and Heartwood Manufacturing. Students can take classes at Ivy Tech and then spend time learning with these local employers.

I toured Heartwood Manufacturing and was impressed by the diversity of the products they can produce and the quality. They have a staff of about 50, and they offer learning opportunities to students from Batesville High School. Students are able to create a product from beginning to end – from ordering the parts and understanding the financial side to putting it together. One student was even building a gun case!

Learn more about the participating businesses:

-Batesville Casket Company, https://www.batesville.com/

-Batesville Tool & Die, http://www.btdinc.com/

-Heartwood Manufacturing, http://heartwoodmfg.com/

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IndianaSkills.comaims to bridge the gap between the types of training and credentials people are pursuing in Indiana and the skills being requested by our state’s employers. The site provides information on employer demand for specific jobs, skills and certifications compared to the supply of graduates completing short-term training (two years or less beyond high school) related to these jobs, skills and certifications.

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New Indiana Postsecondary Pathway Videos

New School Counseling Resources: Indiana College and Career Readiness Counseling Resource Guide

A Guide to Best Practices, Resources and Tools for Comprehensive Counseling (K-12) aligned to Indiana Department of Education Roadmap for Student Success (pp. 3-20).

Ready Indiana Press Releases


Indiana School Counseling Research Review

This 2014 research was conducted for the Indiana Chamber Foundation to assess the current state of school counseling and to see whether the landscape had changed much the last two decades. A 1994 statewide study titled High Hopes Long Odds had identified disparities in the way counselors provided college and career readiness to students.

The new report finds that school counselors are not able to meet the range of postsecondary needs of students, due in large part to a stagnant system and a variety of situations often out of their control. A total of 426 Indiana school counselors – 73% of them from high schools – were surveyed.

What we have is a counseling issue, not an issue with the counselors. In fact, the vast majority of counselors in the survey said they would like to spend more time providing college and career guidance.

School Counseling Report

Indiana School Counseling Research Review press release, executive summary and full report (May 20)

Counseling Research Reveals School Leadership Perceptions

School leaders value the work of their counselors in contributing to positive school environments, but research from the Indiana Chamber also suggests that counselors can do more to address the college and career readiness needs of students.

Those are among the findings in Superintendents & Principals: Partners in Success, the latest school counseling research commissioned by the Indiana Chamber Foundation. The research was conducted by Dr. Brandie Oliver, associate professor in Butler University College of Education, and Matt Fleck, president of Fleck Education. 
Read full story.

New Employer Survey: Downward Workforce Trends Continue

More than half of respondents to a recent survey expect their workforces to grow in the next two years, but more of those employers continue to leave jobs unfilled and rank meeting talent needs as among their biggest challenges.

There were 671 respondents to the ninth annual employer survey, conducted by the Indiana Chamber and its foundation. WGU Indiana sponsored the survey, sent to Indiana Chamber members and customers. Read full story.

 

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Counseling Research Reveals School Leadership Perceptions

(INDIANAPOLIS) — School leaders value the work of their counselors in contributing to positive school environments, but research from the Indiana Chamber of Commerce also suggests that counselors can do more to address the college and career readiness needs of students.

Those are among the findings in Superintendents & Principals: Partners in Success, the latest school counseling research commissioned by the Indiana Chamber Foundation. The research was conducted by Dr. Brandie Oliver, associate professor in Butler University College of Education, and Matt Fleck, president of Fleck Education.

The new report follows 2014’s Indiana School Counseling Research Review and last year’sRecognizing Promising Models of School Counseling for Indiana.

“Continuing to elevate the importance of successful school counseling models and the role of school counselors is critical to preparing Indiana students for college and/or career training,” says Indiana Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Kevin Brinegar. “These findings help confirm that businesses and the broader community must assist educators and contribute to going beyond the traditional school walls to help prepare students for life after high school.”

One survey respondent indicated, “School counseling is not what it was 25 years ago. We need to adapt to the needs of the current generation.” Another urged people to, “Talk about successes and what the counselors are accomplishing.”

Separate surveys of superintendents and principals, along with focus groups, produced these key findings:

• Among 10 questions, superintendents and principals gave the highest rating to “school counselors positively impacting the overall school climate.” In response to a question about whether counselor programs meet college and career readiness needs, overall scores were significantly lower. In addition, the 2014 study by the Indiana Chamber found that most counselors (81%) would like to spend more time helping students in these areas.

• When asked to rank six considerations in making school counselor hiring decisions, supporting the social and emotional needs of students placed highest. Helping meet the academic and college/career needs of students followed. 

• Both superintendents and principals ranked parent outreach and collaboration as the most important professional development topics for school counselors.

The Indiana Chamber’s Indiana Vision 2025 economic development action plan for the state includes the following Outstanding Talent goal: Increasing to 90% the proportion of Indiana students who graduate from high school ready for college and/or career training.

“That is only going to happen with a true team effort involving partnerships between schools, business and community youth-serving organizations,” notes Shelley Huffman, director of college and career readiness for the Indiana Chamber Foundation. “The Indiana Chamber values the work of school counselors. We seek to support their work and build on the growing number of business-education partnerships that are taking place throughout the state. Companies can and should play a role in helping develop their future workforce. The delivery of school counseling services statewide must respond to the needs of our students.”

One of the action steps from previous research was developing a portal for K-12 school counselors (and other stakeholders) to have access to resources and best practices. The Indiana Commission for Higher Education has established that portal as part of the Learn More Indiana (www.learnmoreindiana.org) web site.

Grants from Lilly Endowment Inc. helped fund Superintendents & Principals: Partners in Success and the 2015 report (Recognizing Promising Models of School Counseling for Indiana). The Indiana Chamber’s school counseling research is available online atwww.indianachamber.com/education.

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The Indiana Chamber partners with 24,000 members and investors – representing over four million Hoosiers – to achieve the mission of “cultivating a world-class environment which provides economic opportunity and prosperity.”

New Employer Survey: Downward Workforce Trends Continue

(INDIANAPOLIS) — More than half of respondents to a recent survey expect their workforces to grow in the next two years, but more of those employers continue to leave jobs unfilled and rank meeting talent needs as among their biggest challenges.

There were 671 respondents to the ninth annual employer survey, conducted by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and its foundation. WGU Indiana sponsored the survey, sent to Indiana Chamber members and customers. Participating companies included 58% with fewer than 100 employees and 27% with between 100 and 500 employees. Leading industries represented were manufacturing (21%) and health care/social assistance (11%).

While there were not dramatic changes from workforce results in recent years, several downward trends continued.

Companies that left Indiana jobs unfilled in 2015 due to under-qualified applicants increased to 45% – compared to 43% and 39%, respectively, for the prior two years. 

In addition, 27% of respondents identified filling their workforce and meeting talent needs as ­­their biggest challenge. Another 49% categorized the talent needs as “challenging but not their biggest challenge.” The 76% total exceeds the numbers for 2015 (74%; 24% biggest challenge) and 2014 (72%; 20% biggest challenge).

This comes despite the percentage of respondents requiring an industry certification or occupational license for unfilled jobs declining from 27% in the 2015 survey to 16% in 2016. At the same time, the minimum requirement of a high school diploma increased from 34% to 39%.

On the other end of the education spectrum, more employers are also raising the bar. Employers requiring a bachelor degree as the minimum level for the unfilled jobs increased from 23% a year ago to more than 28% in 2016. This reaffirms the importance of moving the current workforce toward degree completion.

“It’s clear once again that the Outstanding Talent driver of the Indiana Vision 2025 plan remains critical,” offers Indiana Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Kevin Brinegar. “The economic consequences of the skills mismatch continue to impact companies, workers and their families. We must all expand our efforts to resolve this threat to our state’s economic future.”

More than half (52%) of survey respondents indicated they do not offer tuition reimbursement. Of those providing the tuition assistance, only 11% of companies see at least 10% of their employees taking advantage of the benefit. This serves as a potential additional detriment to reaching the Outstanding Talent goals, particularly in elevating the skills of incumbent workers. Recent Cigna Corporation research shows a $1.29 return generated for each $1 investment in tuition reimbursement.

Additional results include:


· Personal qualities (work ethic, responsibility, initiative) and critical thinking skills were cited as most challenging to find among job applicants and new hires at 63% and 54%, respectively
· More than half (54%) of companies expect to grow their workforce in the next 12 to 24 months. Forty-one percent anticipate no change, with 4% seeing a decrease
· Pending retirements continue to be a factor as 57% say up to 5% of their employees will be eligible to retire within the next five years (27% place the percentage of eligible retirees as high as 10%)

View the survey results at www.indianachamber.com/education.

The Indiana Chamber and its foundation, focused on providing research and solutions to enhance Indiana’s economic future, have resources to assist employers, job seekers and students.

IndianaSkills.com provides job supply and demand information both statewide and regionally. It utilizes current labor market data to help companies, prospective workers and students understand Indiana’s workforce landscape. Salary data, required skills and certifications, and creation of effective job descriptions are among the featured tools.

Indiana INTERNnet has been connecting students and employers for internship opportunities for 15 years. The easy-to-use web site, informative Intern Today, Employee Tomorrow guide and regional partnerships are supplemented by additional outreach programs.

The Indiana Vision 2025 plan measures Indiana’s progress compared to other states on 36 goals in the four driver areas of Outstanding Talent, Attractive Business Climate, Superior Infrastructure, and Dynamic and Creative Culture. 

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The Indiana Chamber partners with 24,000 members and investors – representing over four million Hoosiers – to achieve the mission of “cultivating a world-class environment which provides economic opportunity and prosperity.”

IndianaSkills.Com Site Now Features Supply and Demand Job Info for Bachelor’s Degree Level and Higher

The Indiana Chamber and its Foundation hope the new version of theIndianaSkills.com database will help alert Hoosiers to the array of job opportunities in demand in their region and statewide.

IndianaSkills.com – developed as resource to help employers, workers and prospective employees – debuted in late 2012 with job supply and demand data for occupations that require more than a high school diploma but less than a four-year degree. Now, job postings for the bachelor degree level and higher are also featured on the web site.

What’s more, the data updates include postings and analysis for all jobs from January 2013 through June 2014. Other additions include a listing of experience required for each job posted and direct links to training providers.

The Indiana Chamber believes workforce, which is embedded in the Outstanding Talent driver of the organization’s Indiana Vision 2025 economic development action plan for the state, remains the biggest challenge to Indiana’s economic prosperity.

“There is a tremendous amount of education and workforce data available through various sources,” explains Amy Marsh, director of college and career readiness initiatives for the Indiana Chamber. “What IndianaSkills.com does is aggregate that information, add in the job postings data and make it easy for job seekers and employers to learn what is taking place in their industry or region of the state.”

Marsh adds that two entries to the site – middle skills (jobs requiring certificates, certifications and associate’s degrees) and all jobs – allow users to search for the data that best meets their needs. In addition to the most in-demand jobs, available information includes average salaries, required skills, training needed and job status/earnings of recent graduates.

Some of the key trends emerging from the update:

  • High numbers of sales jobs (sales representatives, sales managers, retail sales, retail supervisors) available across industry sectors
  • Growing number of information technology positions (computer specialist, software development, software engineer, computer support, network administrator, network engineer) with low supplies of graduates in these fields. The job growth in this sector is especially strong in Central Indiana
  • Tractor-trailer truck driver remains the position with the most job postings – more than 30,000
  • Communications tops the baseline skills needs – listed in more than 168,000 job postings

“Another interesting development is that seven of the top 10 certifications needed by employees are in the health care industry,” Marsh says. “Separately, since higher skilled jobs were added into the database, physician makes the top 10 most in-demand list in several regions, including the Lafayette and Terre Haute areas. Also, treatment planning is new to the list of specialized skills that are sought.”

On the updated site, employers maintain the opportunity to easily download customized job descriptions. They can learn about regional and state occupational trends, wages being paid for similar positions, and the skills and credentials they should be requiring for their open positions. Career development professionals can take advantage of IndianaSkills.com to better guide students on available career options and the training required for those positions.

Indiana Chamber President and CEO Kevin Brinegar: “The Indiana School Counseling Research Review released by the Indiana Chamber Foundation earlier this year clearly identified the need for more effective counseling. IndianaSkills.com is one resource in that effort.

“The Indiana Vision 2025 plan has four drivers, but from day one we’ve identified Outstanding Talent as the most critical need. A tool like IndianaSkills.com that helps match education and training with the skills required in the workplace is part of the solution.”

IndianaSkills.com is a product of the Indiana Chamber Foundation with support from the Joyce Foundation and Lilly Endowment Inc.

AAR, Vincennes Univ. Programs Help Students Get Aviation Careers Airborne

Blog by Matt Ottinger, Indiana Chamber of Commerce

 

AAR, an aviation services and products company with 60 global locations — including Indianapolis — and Vincennes University have a partnership that is producing well-trained airline services technicians, mechanics and more.

These organizations held a “Tug and Tour” event at the Vincennes University Aviation Technology Center (ATC) at the Indianapolis International Airport last week. The event featured a tour of an aircraft hangar, as well as lunch on a Boeing 737.

The ATC features advanced aviation labs, testing equipment and elaborate maintenance hangars — and class sizes are limited to 25 students.

It was enlightening to learn about the partnership and how well-prepared these students are as they jump from the classroom and hands-on training into well-paying careers. Additionally, AAR offers paid internships to many Vincennes students in the program. VU instructor Ed Briggeman explained the industry is thriving, and that students who complete VU’s Aviation Maintenance program have many opportunities through the school’s myriad partners and connections. Furthermore, the program prepares students for Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification and entry-level employment. A certified mechanic can make $50,000 – $55,000 per year, and the program yielded 16 mechanics in July — and by August 15 of them were placed into positions.

Students can also pursue training in aviation flight, which paves the (run)way for careers as pilots and instructors. And VU’s Indianapolis program features a fleet of well-maintained aircraft (including Cessna 172 and 172RG, as well as multi-engine training in a Piper Seminole).

For more on this program or to inquire about viewing the facility, contact Corinna Vonderwell at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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IndianaSkills.comaims to bridge the gap between the types of training and credentials people are pursuing in Indiana and the skills being requested by our state’s employers. The site provides information on employer demand for specific jobs, skills and certifications compared to the supply of graduates completing short-term training (two years or less beyond high school) related to these jobs, skills and certifications.

Tour events connect education with industry

The Indiana Chamber co-sponsored two industry tours that brought educators and employers together to find ways to align efforts and better meet the needs of students. 

The first event was in Lafayette at Subaru of Indiana Automotive. Educators, counselors and administrators listened to representatives from Caterpillar, Nanshan America, Kirby Risk, Duke Energy and Chrysler Group. Each employer seemed to be facing the same issue – a significant portion of their employees will soon be eligible for retirement and the current talent pool cannot replenish their workforce. 

The group toured the Subaru plant, where they saw nearly every process for building a vehicle. Subaru, like many manufacturers, hires employees of almost all educational backgrounds, from high school diploma to master’s degree. 

The next industry tour was in the southwest region at NSA Crane, a United States Navy installation. The base is the third largest naval installation in the world by geographic area and employs approximately 3,300 people. 

Representatives from GKN Sinter Metals, TASUS Corporation, Cook Group and Jasper Engines all spoke about their workforces. Overwhelmingly, employer needs center on soft skills (communication, basic math and professionalism) and workforce readiness. 

Matt Weinzapfel of Jasper Engines reported that 48% of their workforce hold an associate’s degree and/or technical certification and 36% hold no post-secondary degree, while only 16% hold bachelor’s degrees. 

The group toured the Crane naval base and learned about jobs in electronic warfare, strategic missions and special missions. The base also offers internships within the various sectors. 

“All of these jobs sitting open can be filled if we break down the knowledge barriers and reach students,” said Dan Peterson, vice president industry & government affairs, Cook Group. 

The Indiana Youth Institute hosted the events, with the Center for Education and Career Innovation and the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning also co-sponsoring. 

Thank you for following the Ready Indiana group! We encourage you to also follow us on Twitter (@readyindiana). 

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IndianaSkills.comaims to bridge the gap between the types of training and credentials people are pursuing in Indiana and the skills being requested by our state’s employers. The site provides information on employer demand for specific jobs, skills and certifications compared to the supply of graduates completing short-term training (two years or less beyond high school) related to these jobs, skills and certifications.

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Lilly Endowment Counseling Upcoming Dates:

September 30 2017
Endowment notification to districts/charter schools of 4-year Implementation Grants for Comprehensive Counseling

October 1, 2017
Chamber Foundation Accepting New Requests for Technical Assistance with 4-year Endowment Implementation Grants (Career Readiness, Work-and-Learn, Business-Education Partnerships) via email: shuffman@indianachamber.com