Thoughts From the Coordinator’s Desk!
January 29, 2018
by Anna Stamper

I wanted to share this excellent podcast, especially the first 15 minutes, which is all about workforce development. Here is how it is described on…

“Picture this: After years of hard work, the world is your oyster. You’re about to graduate with an advanced degree into a prestigious field. Then, you’re out to lunch and you see a restaurant manager position that pays just as much as your hopeful starting salary, but without the student debt attached. One of our listeners was in that position recently. And he’s not alone: Americans face $1.3+ trillion in student debt, and less assurance the job market’s going to provide salaries to cover it. We put this soul searching to Maura Reynolds, a senior editor at Politico, who’s just out with new findings on the skills-education-employment pipeline.” (

This podcast and accompanying report address one of the core missions and goals of Clatsop WORKS, which is to help students discover what they want to do BEFORE entering colleges and universities. Also, helping students understand all of their options as they enter the 21st century workforce. There is much work to be done in this field, and I believe we are just getting started. Questions abound: Does everyone need to get a 4 year degree? Are there other pathways? What are the variables? Does college debt cancel out the benefits of a 4- year degree, or does a 4-year degree lead to better promotion potential?

The answers depend on the individual students, their goals, and their desires for the future.

As it turns out, Clatsop County is ahead of the game in terms of creating workforce learning environments that can really make a difference! In the podcast, they ask the question- Who is responsible for this? Should employers be bringing more to the table if they want a stronger workforce? In Clatsop County, our employers ARE stepping up to offer these opportunities. We are trailblazers! If you are interested in what the national conversation is on internships, apprenticeships, and career pathways, take a listen below!


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