Welding Industry Goes Hollywood

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We’ve all been hearing about the projected lack of skilled welders…  In fact, I’ve been talking about it a lot here on this site, and over at JoeWelder.com.  

I recently came across an article over at PlantEngineering.com:

They cite a recent poll from the FABTECH International & AWS Welding Show “revealed executives cited the lack of employee skills as a leading obstacle to growth.” And how organizations like FABTECH and Fabricators & Manufacturers Association International are using celebrity spokesmen to tout the opportunites in manufacturing– for skilled workers.

READ “Celebrities help draw attention to skilled worker shortage: he data is there; now it’s supported by folks like Jay Leno and John Ratzenberger”

It sounds like a good idea…  and they’re targetting young people, to get them interested in manufacturing as a career opportunity….

but something struck me as I read more closely.  A quote from Jerry Shankel, president and CEO of the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA):

They [manufacturing executives] report their biggest challenge today is finding skilled workers, especially young people, who have the knowledge to handle the increasingly sophisticated tasks required in manufacturing.”

The phrase that caught my eye was “young people.”  What about older, middle aged workers. The ones being laid off, who’s jobs are outsourced to China, Mexico, or any market where labor is cheaper.  I can’t help but wonder if these executives are looking for young people because they work cheaper, they don’t have families to support, mortgage payments, insurance…  all the things that go along with being not so young.

What are your thoughts?  

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