The jobs are coming, are we ready?
Bridging the Talent Gap
Our region will add 35,000 new jobs over the next five years, according to the 2018 Talent Demand Study update. The biggest factor holding back job growth is the lack of qualified applicants to fill the positions. We must take action now to bridge the talent gap.
This is where we come in. The Chamber, fueled by Accelerate Greater Charleston, is working with regional partners to drive educational change. Our ongoing strategy involves a three-prong approach: Activate, Advance and Align.
We need your help! Become a part of the Chamber’s efforts to bridge our talent gap.
Middle-skill jobs, requiring education beyond high school but not a four-year degree, make up the largest part of South Carolina’s labor market.
Young minds for the future
We believe that exposing students to what jobs are in high-demand and showing them how to pursue the education needed is the way forward.
Preparing our future workforce begins today. Activities that increase opportunities for students to apply what they are learning in the classroom through the lens of career pathways helps begin to bridge the gap.
We activate through:
- Career Academies: schools-within-schools that are academically rigorous and provide career-themed education in key industries.
- TEALS: delivers high-quality instruction and hands-on learning in coding and computer science
- Capstone Experiences: field-based learning experiences where students apply knowledge and experience industry settings, including: Bridge Walks, Build a Shed, Hackathons, TEALS and YPAMA
The graduation rate is 13% higher for South Carolina students who take three or more career education classes.
Opportunities for success
Students must understand what avenues are available when it comes to post high school education. Too many young people today believe that there is only one path to economic success—the four-year degree. For many, time, duration and cost are barriers.
There are opportunities out there that allow for flexibility in learning and earning, often with faster completion times and no to low debt, and we need to be the ones shining a light.
We advance through:
- Youth Apprenticeships: students take high school classes, attend career-specific classes at Trident Technical College and work at a host employer, completing the program with a diploma, certifications and paid work experience… debt free
- Developing workforce-savvy educators: provide professional development for educators
- Leverage Government Relations: advocate for improved education policy and funding structures
Low-income students in early college programs are 8x as likely to obtain a college degree.
Employers and our education system
Engaging the business community and education leaders in discussions allows for the creation of programs that align with employer talent demand and encourages students into those pathways.
It’s about continuing to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with a changing reality.
We align through:
- The Talent Cabinet: an advisory body of business, education and community leaders guiding the Chamber’s Talent Advancement platform
- Promoting the Center for Business Research: the premiere research capabilities for internal and external economic development needs, for example, the Talent Demand Study
- Building community partnerships: actively engage with community partners pursuing improved education outcomes such as Tri-County Cradle to Career Coalition, Trident United Way and others
- The Human Resources Professional Network: executives from industry coming together to share smart practices and engage with experts on key topics
30+ new STEM degrees added to the region since the 2016 Talent Demand Study
Career-themed schools within high schools, teaching students relevant skills for key industriesLearn More
Where students go to high school, Trident Tech and work as paid apprentices at host companyLearn More
Students compete to build a shed while gaining valuable construction trade skillsLearn More
Helping close the computer science gap by increasing access to educationLearn More
In the News
Successful 2nd Annual Build...
Have you ever found yourself making a goofy smile when you see...
Career Academies Help Students...
Charleston Southern University and the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce present "Code...
Charleston Metro Chamber Awarded...
Charleston Metro Chamber’s Lead CHS Foundation has been awarded a $25,000 grant...
Meet the Talent Advancement Team
Get engaged in the Chamber’s Talent Advancement work