From The Journal of Martinsburg, W.Va.:
On a recent visit to the Eastern Panhandle, West Virginia University President E. Gordon Gee remarked on the jobs situation in the state.
There’s over 20,000 jobs in this state that we do not have skilled workers for. We don’t have a jobs problem, we have a skills problem,” Gee said. “Opioid addiction is a matter of hopelessness and despair because jobs are not available to them. So we need to connect those jobs and make sure it’s available.”
Gee, of course, is right. Thankfully, the state Legislature is taking steps to help increase the number of skilled workers in West Virginia
West Virginia Invests, which was approved by lawmakers during the 2019 session, provides a pathway for students to attend the state’s community colleges where they’ll receive training for careers with noted worker shortages. These students will need to meet certain criteria to qualify, but will receive tuition assistance.
Officials at Blue Ridge Community and Technical College this week expressed enthusiasm for the program and its positive influence on the state and the region. …