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Jeff Connor-Naylor & Jeran Culina   ·  

Business Leaders United Send Letter to The Hill Supporting Provisions in JOBS Act and College Transparency Act

More than 90 businesses and business membership organizations have signed a letter to Congressional leadership organized by Business Leaders United in support of including provisions of the JOBS Act and College Transparency Act in economic competitiveness legislation being ironed out by the House and Senate.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic even began, a majority of small and mid-sized businesses struggled to hire workers with industry-specific skills. To grow and remain competitive, employers need investments in skills training that help workers quickly prepare for new jobs or get new skills for their current job. Many businesses are not requiring candidates to have a 4-year degree and are hiring workers with industry-recognized credentials, licensures, and certifications, which can be achieved in much less time.

However, most short-term programs do not qualify for federal financial aid, and many businesses are unable to offer training in-house. As a result, many workers have no choice but to either forgo continued career training or pay out of pocket and potentially incur debt.

The Pell Grant program is the nation’s largest grant program supporting postsecondary education and training for low-income workers and students. The JOBS Act would allow workers and students to use the grant for high-quality, short-term programs with proven records of industry success.

In addition, the CTA creates a secure data system within the Department of Education to track student outcomes that will inform efforts supporting student success. It will provide a range of information such as wages and earnings data by field of study to help students identify in-demand occupations and reduce the skills mismatch.

The JOBS Act and CTA would help businesses hire workers with the skills they need to succeed and assist workers with accessing high-quality skills training for in-demand jobs. Now is the time for business leaders to contact their Members of Congress to support passage of these issues.