The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition is made up of a bipartisan group of state legislators as well as education policymakers, business, labor, and community leaders that have come together with the aim of closing Indiana’s skills gap and serving as a resource for policymakers working toward that end. The Coalition uses research and data to promote public policies that will bring greater awareness to and help match the skills of Indiana’s workers with the demands its workforce.
The Coalition’s roots begin with the 2010 report Indiana’s Forgotten Middle Skills Jobs, produced by a partnership of the Indiana Institute for Working Families and the National Skills Coalition. The Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition was formed from the group of core advisors who helped to form the content and policy recommendations of that 2010 report. Following the success of this report, the Institute, with generous support from the Joyce Foundation, was able to expand the initial group of core advisors into a broad-based coalition; growing the membership from 11 initial core advisors to 25 coalition members representing 20 organizations.
With guidance from the National Skills Coalition, Skills2Compete Campaigns across the nation have had tangible impact on changing the tone of policy discussions in their respective states while cultivating a host of new allies in support of an expanded skills agenda. Indiana’s Skills2Compete Coalition is actively mobilizing stakeholders around the campaign’s policy goals, which work to bring increased press attention to Indiana’s forgotten middle-skills jobs and the workers needed to fill them, and which present these issues to Indiana’s state and national policymakers in order to build awareness and interest in advancing the skill levels of Indiana’s workforce.
What is the definition of Middle-Skill Jobs?
We typically use this as the standard definition: Middle-skill jobs require more than a high school diploma but less than a four-year college degree. The term middle-skill refers to the level of education and training required by a particular job. It should not be confused with the actual competence and capacity of workers and occupations — many middle-skill occupations require highly skilled trade and technical workers. Examples of middle-skill occupations include nurses, police officers, fire fighters, medical technicians, air traffic controllers, electricians, and mechanics, amongst many others.
Vision of the Indiana Skills2Compete Coalition:
The 21st Century economy demands that every Hoosier have the opportunity to earn high-quality post-secondary education or training – leading minimally to an occupational credential, industry certification, or associate’s degree- to be pursued urgently and with dedication. Every person should also have the opportunity to attain the basic skills needed to pursue such education.