States launch cybersecurity efforts focused on building 21st century workforce, NIST releases cybersecurity framework

Cybersecurity efforts have been increasing across the country. In July, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who also serves as chair of the National Governors Association (NGA), announced that 38 governors signed A Compact to Improve State Cybersecurity – a multi-state, coordinated cybersecurity effort focused in three areas that will

  • Enhance state cybersecurity governance;
  • Prepare and defend their states from cybersecurity events; and,
  • Grow the nation’s cybersecurity workforce.

The compact was the culmination of McAuliffe’s Meet the Threat: States Confront the Cyber Challenge. In addition to the compact, new cybersecurity-focused economic development efforts have been launched in several states including Delaware, Kentucky, and Wyoming. Meanwhile, NIST has released a cybersecurity workforce framework intended for use by all sectors in the states

$24M grant to spur Ohio, New York communities

In an effort designed to stimulate economic growth and workforce development in Ohio and New York communities, KeyBank Foundation announced a $24 million grant awarded to JumpStart, Inc. The grant represents the foundation’s single largest philanthropic commitment to date. Ray Leach, CEO of JumpStart said in a prepared statement that the grant “will dramatically increase the impact of entrepreneurs and small businesses on neighborhoods and communities." Leach went on to say that the grant will provide capital for more startup and scaling companies, and will increase the participation of minorities and women in the growth of those companies.

Commission led by Bloomberg, New America imagines the future of work

Whether or not the drastic changes coming to the future of work go well or poorly for America depends largely on how the country responds, according to a new report from Shift: The Commission on Work, Workers, and Technology. The commission, which is led by Bloomberg and New America and comprised of members from across industry, philanthropy, government, and academia, structures scenarios regarding the future of work around two guiding questions: Will the future have more or less work? Will that work be divided into jobs or into tasks? Based on these questions, the authors developed four scenarios to use as a framework, each with hypothetical driving factors, early signs, challenges, and signature technologies. They also propose examples of machine- and human-occupation within each scenario, as well as some potential educational, social, and geographic implications.

White House order addresses workforce initiatives

Earlier this month, the White House released an executive order to expand apprenticeship programs and to study other federal workforce initiatives. The administration will attempt to reduce regulations for “effective” efforts while reducing funding for other programs.

US lacks in workforce development; competitiveness at risk

If it takes a village to raise a child, it may take an entire educational support system as well as public policy reform and funding to get that child into a skilled technical job. A two-year study coordinated by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine found that the disjointed method of workforce development approaches in the U.S. may be hampering the economic competitiveness of the country.

Tennessee reconnects with adult students, aims to boost workforce

Adults in Tennessee seeking to return to the classroom will have a new option for free tuition at community colleges, part of an expansion of the Tennessee Promise scholarship program. The newly passed and expanded Tennessee Reconnect legislation extends eligibility for free tuition to persons who have been out of school for longer periods of time or who may have never attended college. It is part of Gov. Bill Haslam’s “Drive to 55” focus, where he hopes to increase the percentage of the state’s adults equipped with a college degree or certificate to 55 percent; it is currently closer to 30 percent in Tennessee.

Workforce needs better training, support policies to meet demand

Could Jill Watson be the typical graduate assistant of the future? Watson was Georgia Tech’s first AI teaching assistant that fooled some in the computer science class into thinking the assistant they were dealing with in an online forum was human. New methods of teaching and training are being explored to handle the growing needs of filling middle-skilled jobs, according to several recently released reports. A new report from the Pew Research Center focuses on whether workers will be able to compete with artificial intelligence tools and whether capitalism itself will survive. Two other reports released last month by the National Skills Coalition stress workforce training through work-based learning policy and surveys all the states for the effectiveness of such programs, and provides policy recommendations by revisiting a November report. The new Pew report, The Future of Jobs and Jobs Training, begins by asserting that “massive numbers of jobs are at risk” as smart, autonomous systems continue to infiltrate the workplace. Solutions evolving from conversations surrounding the topic include changes in educational learning environments to help people stay employable in the future, the report says.

Maryland legislation encourages manufacturing jobs, training

New legislation in Maryland that takes effect in June provides $1 million in workforce development scholarships and builds on current apprenticeship programs, while also providing tax incentives for new and existing manufacturers to create jobs in areas of the state that need them most. Gov. Larry Hogan signed the More Jobs for Marylanders Act into law last week, a key piece of his jobs initiative. The new legislation establishes scholarships for eligible students enrolled in job training programs at community colleges, and contains measures to encourage high schools to offer additional vocational training, as well as requiring state agencies to analyze their registered apprenticeship programs.

State grants, partnerships focus on workforce needs in several states

Noting a growing need for additional education to meet workforce needs, several states have announced programs focusing on education and workforce needs, channeling state funding to grants that will focus on aligning learning opportunities with business and industry needs, or creating new initiatives in the private sector. Reaching a higher educational attainment among a greater percentage of the workforce by 2025 is also a goal set by several of the states.

IP-intensive industries pay higher wages, support nearly 30 percent of all U.S. jobs, USPTO Finds

U.S. intellectual property (IP)-intensive industries employ at least 27.9 million workers and contributed more than $6.6 trillion dollars (38.2 percent) to U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) in 2014, according to Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: 2016 Update. In this update to a 2012 report, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and Economics and Statistics Administration (ESA) identified 81 industries (from among 313 total) as IP-intensive including trademark-intensive, copyright-intensive, and patent-intensive industries.


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