Our community continues to attract new companies and has become a hot spot that attracts high-quality talent. There are many reasons why these companies and individuals want to call the Triangle home. One major factor remains our strong education system. The Wake County Public School System is ranked No. 1 nationwide in “gold standard” teachers.
That strong education system feeds directly into the local workforce, creating a robust talent pipeline.
“If you’re not from this area, I want you to learn a bit about how wonderful our schools are here,” said Keith Poston, president of the WakeEd Partnership. “We have a phenomenal public school system.”
Poston was one of the speakers at our July Young Professionals Network virtual program. He was joined by Greg Eyman, K-5 STEM coordinator, Brentwood Magnet School of Engineering, and Bill Seyler, chair of the Wake County Public Schools School-to-Career Council. Ashley Cagle, assistant executive director with Wake County Economic Development, moderated the discussion.
“Wake County Schools are focused on the 4 C’s,” said Seyler. “Creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking.”
These are critical soft skills to have as potential employers are looking for employees who have them, and can work well in teams that can produce solutions. The Wake County Public School System prepares its students to meet the demands of the workforce by implenting the 4 C’s as soon as students enter kindergarten.
Eyman discussed how students at Brentwood receive hands-on experience through the STEM program. They gain experience through project-based learning, lead teams throughout their classroooms, and create solutions that they can share with the community.
But, a critical aspect of the talent pipeline is to ensure that it remains strong for the future. That means ensuring students want to remain in the area once they graduate.
Cagle said the business community plays an important role.
“If this interests you, I encourage you to reach out and find out if there is a role for you in Summer STEM,” she said.
She said interested businesses should learn more about the Summer STEM program.
Cagle also pointed out that businesses that want to get engaged could join a business alliance team at an area school.
“The business alliances are working with the schools, being guest lecturers,” he said. “They’re able to do it from home with the virtual meetings. They’re looking for young professionals. There are a lot of opportunities to get engaged.”
The N.C. Business Committee for Education is looking for people to be virtual speakers in local high schools. You can create a profile on the North Carolina Business Committee for Education's website and be matched with teachers that need speakers with your skillset.
We want to thank our speakers for sharing their valuable perspectives about the school-to-career talent pipeline in our region. We also want to thank our sponsors whose support made this, and other, YPN events possible.
Our next YPN program will be on Sept. 15 where will we preview the 2020 election and what will drive results across North Carolina. Register today and we look forward to seeing you online in September.