Mike Rowe on the skills gap, and American jobs

Mike RoweMike Rowe addresses U.S. Congress

Of course, he cleaned up a bit for his appearance before the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, but don’t hold that against him. He got their attention, and his message about skilled workers and the struggle to fill hundreds of thousands of trades, utilities, transportation, and manufacturing positions is well worth sharing.

Mike Rowe's Testimony Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation May 11, 2011“In general, people are surprised that high unemployment can exist at the same time as a skilled labor shortage…

…we talk about creating millions of shovel-ready jobs for a society that doesn’t really encourage people to pick up a shovel.”

Mike Rowe

Listen as he draws Congress and the folks attending the hearing in describing his grandfather, a Master Electrician and jack-of-all-trades in Baltimore.

Rowe said, “For most of my life, my grandad woke up clean, and came home dirty, and in between he accomplished some things that were nothing short of miraculous… basically he could fix or build anything.”

Mike Rowe testifying before Congress“I had become disconnected from a lot of things that really used to fascinate me growing up. I no longer thought where my food came from, or how my electricity worked, or who fixed my pipes, or who made my clothes…

…I believe that we need a national PR Campaign for skilled Labor – like a big one. Something that addresses the widening skills gap head-on, and reconnects the country with the most important part of our workforce.”

Mike Rowe

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About local49

IUOE Local 49 was formed in 1927. Today we are more than 13,000 men and women in Minnesota, North and South Dakota with contracts for highway/heavy and building contractors, well drillers, equipment repair shops, welding shops, sand and gravel suppliers, counties, municipalities, hospitals, school districts, cemeteries, and more.

Posted on January 30, 2012, in infrastructure, Jobs, Training & Apprenticeship, U.S. Congress and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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