ECONOMIC & WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT
A 21st century economy requires workers and businesses with 21st century skills and expertise.
For our economy and workforce to be resilient in the face of increasing automation, artificial intelligence, and globalization, we need to ensure more of our young people and workers have access to quality career and technical education (CTE) at every level of schooling and after. We also need to ensure more of our businesses have the support they need to adapt to changing economic conditions and create good paying, 21st century jobs.
I support expansion and promotion of career and technical education, which traditionally has included education for jobs such as plumbing, carpentry, and mechanics, but more recently has begun to include education for jobs involving robotics, coding, entrepreneurship, mechatronics (engineering of electrical and mechanical systems, such as factory robots operated by computers), and more. The more Tennesseans trained in these skills, the more workers and entrepreneurs we will have to staff, adapt, and build companies of the future right here in Tennessee.
Robotics, coding, mechatronics, entrepreneurship. These are skills in demand in the 21st century. Jobs needing these skills will be created by automation and globalization, not eliminated.
We need to make sure our workforce and businesses are ready.