As I travel around Wisconsin, I speak with far too many employers who are in need of skilled workers but are unable to find them. There are good, high-paying jobs available to Wisconsinites, but we simply do not have enough people with the right skillsets to fill them. These are jobs like electricians, plumbers, crane operators, construction workers, steel workers, nurses, and other jobs in manufacturing and information technology (IT).
A great way to prepare students for the skilled jobs of the future is advertising the benefits of pursuing career and technical education. Lakeshore Technical College in Cleveland, WI is consistently rated as one of the top schools in the country and I have visited their campus many times. On Wednesday, I was glad to have the opportunity to visit Moraine Park Technical College. I was amazed by their facilities and hands-on staff whose mission is to prepare their students to succeed in the skilled workforce. Welding, nursing, manufacturing—these jobs aren't going away. As our economy grows, we will need more people doing these jobs. Here are some photos from my visit to Moraine Park Technical College.
I believe that a large part of the reason we have a skilled labor shortage is because there is a false "stigma" attached to career and technical education. I often hear people say things like "at least he has a trade to fall back on". I rarely hear "she made the right choice in becoming a welder and now has a great job that will always be in-demand", which is most often the case. Students are too often led to believe from elementary school through high school graduation that the way to succeed in life is to go to acquire a traditional four-year college degree. That isn't the only option for students, and it is often not the best. I hear from Wisconsinites in their 20s, 30s, even 40s who tell me they received a liberal arts degree, couldn't get a job in their field of study, and have now gone back to school to learn a trade. Instead of being made aware that they could have done this right after high school, they piled up massive amounts of student loan debt and missed out on many years of high-paying work. I am glad that they have finally realized where they want to take their career, but that does not make up for the fact that as kids, they were not provided an adequate menu of options for what they could do after high school.
Another great example of how Wisconsin is leading the way in closing the skilled labor gap are our apprenticeship programs. As a member of the House Committee on Education and Labor, I have been in many meetings, briefings, and hearings on apprenticeships, and have seen firsthand that Wisconsin's system is top-notch and should be used as a model for other states. The U.S. Department of Labor has reported that 93 percent of individuals that complete apprenticeship programs not only find jobs, but make an average starting salary of $70,000.
I am proud to be from a state that builds things. Wisconsin's 6th District is home to more manufacturing jobs than any other Congressional District. That is why it is so important that we support the manufacturing industry and prepare our children for these good, high-paying skills-based jobs of the future.
Easter and Passover
As we celebrate Easter weekend and the end of Passover week, please join me in taking a moment to reflect on life's many blessings.
I hope you and your family had a blessed Good Friday and have a happy Easter!
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" -1 Peter 1:3
To all of my Jewish friends- Chag Sameach! I hope you had a blessed Passover.
How Can I Help You?
One of the most important things I do as a U.S. Representative is help people having problems with federal agencies. Although I cannot override the decisions made by a federal agency, I can often intervene on a person's behalf to answer questions, find solutions, or just cut through the red tape.
Below you will find a list of agencies that I can help you with. However, regardless of which agency you need help with, I need a completed privacy authorization form to comply with the provisions of the Privacy Act. Please download this printable version of the privacy authorization form and then fax or mail to the address listed under the agency from which you are seeking assistance.
You can also call my Fond du Lac office for further assistance at 920-907-0624.
These servicemembers from Manitowoc, Two Rivers, and Mishicot are based overseas. Thank you to our local Wisconsin active-duty military and veterans for serving Wisconsin and the United States with honor!
Last Sunday, we commemorated Jesus’ triumphant arrival to Jerusalem just days before his crucifixion. I hope you had a blessed Palm Sunday.
“They took branches of palm trees and went forth to meet him, and cried, Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” -John 12:13
Monday was Vietnam War Veterans Day, where we honored those who served in the Vietnam War. Thank you for your service in fighting for freedom and democracy and against tyranny and communism.
State Representative Paul Tittle and I got to see another example of Wisconsin's world-class manufacturing businesses at Manitowoc Tool and Manufacturing.
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The IRS announced that the federal income tax filing due date for 2020 taxes has been extended from April 15 to May 17, 2021.
Friday was Autism Awareness Day, where we brought this disorder to light and celebrated our family, friends, and neighbors who have ore know someone affected by Autism
As your Congressman, I’m here to serve you. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out to my offices in Fond du Lac and Washington. If you enjoyed this newsletter, be sure to forward it to your family and friends so they can stay informed on what I’m doing in Washington and the 6th District, and let them know that they can subscribe by clicking here.
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