In the Know: Fueling the 'workforce engine'
Thursday, April 27, 2017
In May, 591 students will become graduates of Alexandria Technical and Community College and will begin a new chapter in their lives. Most of the graduates will go directly into the regional workforce, while some will continue their education. The college's job placement rate of more than 98 percent speaks to the quality of ATCC graduates and the key role they play in the state of Minnesota's and the region's "workforce engine." In addition, ATCC has the fourth highest graduation rate in the nation for public two-year colleges.
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development projects that by 2020, more than 70 percent of the jobs in the state will require some type of post-secondary education. Furthermore, changing demographics, such as the retirement of baby boomers, will exacerbate an already existing labor shortage. Recent, current and future graduates of ATCC are extremely important to regional employers who need skilled labor. There are some dark clouds on the horizon for not only ATCC, but other Minnesota State colleges and universities, if state funding falls short of what is needed to protect programs and services.