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April 21, 2018

‘Future Ready’ initiative will enhance talent pool, close skill gaps and fulfill businesses needs of today and tomorrow : Kate Brown

Portland : In her 2018 State of the State address, Governor Kate Brown announced the launch of Future Ready Oregon, a skill and job training initiative designed to close the skills gap between the skills Oregon’s workers have and the skills that the state’s growing businesses needs.

There there were more than 66,000 openings with companies hoping to fill with Oregonians, However, the problem is that there isn’t a big enough talent pool in the state to fill in those vacancies. The state’s initiative called “Future Ready” will provide training to students and adults as well as minorities to help close the gap between the skills Oregon’s workers have and the skills that Oregon’s growing businesses need, Gov. Kate Brown said.

Brown’s Future Ready initiative includes ensuring every student in Oregon has the opportunity to participate in hands-on learning programs and making those type of programs available in every school district.

Highlights of the Future Ready initiative

-Dedicate $300 million to Career Technical Education (CTE) classes in the 2019-2021 state budget
-Make hands-on learning programs available in every school district in Oregon
-Ensure every student in Oregon has the opportunity to participate in hands-on learning programs
-Prepare our current workforce by arming them with the skills they need to help Oregon’s economy grow
-Next-Gen Apprenticeships to Expand registered apprenticeship opportunities to fields like IT, healthcare, advanced wood manufacturing, and high-tech manufacturing
-Higher Education Coordinating Commission and Business Oregon to increase collaboration to match high-growth industries with job training programs

Turn wage earners into job creators (House Bill 4144)

Helps mid-career construction professionals start their own business, and provides incentive to attract and retain new, young talent into the workforce. ​For four types of construction licenses, directs the Construction Contractors Board and the Building Codes Division to waive all state fees and formal education requirements for aspiring entrepreneurs who have worked in the construction industry for more than eight years. Opens up an existing fund at Business Oregon to these new small businesses, to help with up-front costs like insurance, bonding, and equipment; funds will only be available for businesses in rural Oregon who work on affordable, low-, and moderate-income housing . Directs the Higher Education Coordinating Commission to give grant funding to these new small businesses to recruit, hire, and retain Oregonians new to the construction workforce; funds directly target rural businesses working on specific types of projects.

Ensure investments by the state are felt equitably across Oregon. Business Oregon to focus on rural areas, communities of color, and Oregon’s nine tribes. Ease entry to high growth industries. ​State agencies to align qualifications for entry-level healthcare, homecare, and community health jobs; workers will be able to train for several sectors of the industry at once.

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