So many U.S. manufacturing jobs, so few skilled workers. (Reuters, 10/12/2011)
Excerpt: Most of the jobs hard to fill are for skilled trades, Internet technology, engineers, sales representatives and machine operators.
Yet American colleges are producing fewer math and science graduates as students favor social sciences, whose workload is perceived to be manageable, leading to a skills mismatch.
Math, engineering, technology and computer science students accounted for about 11.1 percent of college graduates in 1980, according to government data. That share dropped to about 8.9 percent in 2009.
An aging population of skilled workers is adding to the problem. As the baby boomers retire, there are fewer skilled workers available to replace them.
"Many of the younger kids that are coming out of college have been discouraged to go into manufacturing," said Dennis Bray, president and CEO of Contour Precision Group.
And it's not as though this just happened.
December 1, 2009