Executive Action Will Help Thousands of Service Members Get Credentialed for Manufacturing Jobs
Tomorrow, President Obama will visit Honeywell’s Golden Valley facility in Golden Valley, Minnesota to call on Congress to act on the “To Do List” by passing the Veterans Job Corps legislation. The President will also announce a new We Can’t Wait initiative that will help thousands of service members with manufacturing and other high-demand skills receive civilian credentials and licenses. As thousands of our servicemen and women return from the end of the war in Iraq and the start of a responsible drawdown in Afghanistan, now more than ever we must fulfill our duty to them. In addition, the President’s Council of Economic Advisers and the National Economic Council have released a new report, Military Skills for America’s Future: Leveraging Military Service and Experience to Put Veterans and Military Spouses Back to Work. The report analyzes the labor market situation of America’s veterans, discusses the challenges that returning veterans and military spouses face as they seek to enter or re-enter civilian employment, and outlines the measures the Administration has taken to address these challenges.
The President will address these issues at the Honeywell Golden Valley facility. Honeywell is a participant in the President’s Advanced Manufacturing Partnership, a partnership which has brought together industry, universities, the federal government, and other stakeholders to identify emerging technologies with the potential to create high-quality domestic manufacturing jobs and enhance U.S. global competitiveness. The AMP Steering Committee has recognized that veterans and separating service members are a great resource to help fill certain skills gaps in the manufacturing sector. Honeywell is also an active partner in the Administration’s Joining Forces initiative and has hired 900 veterans since 2011. The Golden Valley facility the President will be visiting tomorrow employs 65 veterans.
The Department of Defense, at the President’s direction, has established a Military Credentialing and Licensing Task Force. The Task Force will focus its initial efforts on industries that have an identified need for more skilled workers and stand to benefit from military expertise and training, including: manufacturing, first responders, healthcare, information technology, transportation, and logistics. Within one year, the Task Force will: (1) identify military specialties that readily transfer to high-demand jobs; (2) work with civilian credentialing and licensing associations to address gaps between military training programs and credentialing and licensing requirements; and (3) provide service members with greater access to necessary certification and licensing exams.
Tomorrow’s announcement is the first action of the Task Force, and will provide opportunities for up to 126,000 service members to gain industry-recognized, nationally-portable certifications for high-demand manufacturing jobs. In a recent study by Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute, over 80% of manufacturers reported moderate to serious shortages of skilled talent for many of the jobs that require these types of certifications. Due to the high-quality of their military training, our veterans have the skill sets that employers demand to fill these positions.
Through the Military Credentialing and Licensing Task Force, the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps have worked with manufacturing credentialing agencies to expand certifications to military personnel with skills in the high-demand fields of engineering, logistics, machining, maintenance, and welding. Through these partnerships, service members will be able to test for and earn civilian credentials immediately upon completing their initial military training. This effort builds upon and helps to accelerate the Administration’s Skills for America’s Future partnership with the National Association of Manufacturers to provide 500,000 community college students with industry-recognized credentials that will help them secure jobs in the manufacturing sector. In the first year of this effort, nearly 85,000 certifications were awarded.
The machinist, logistics, and engineering credentials that select service members can earn as part of the partnerships the President will announce tomorrow are highly valued by Honeywell and are an important element of our hiring process. The new partnership between the Army and the National Institute for Metalworking Skills will allow soldiers who complete machinist training and earn the “Level 1 Machinist” Certification to qualify for Honeywell’s machinist hiring qualifications without the need for an additional two-year degree.
The President will also continue to call on Congress to act on the “To Do List” and pass the Veterans Job Corps, which would put veterans back to work protecting and rebuilding America.
Congress’ To Do List