(TRENTON) – Legislation Assembly Democrats Celeste M. Riley, Connie Wagner, Charles Mainor and Thomas P. Giblin sponsored to provide New Jersey high school students the opportunity to explore career options in the country’s fastest growing industries received its final legislative approval in the Assembly on Thursday.
The legislation (A-3270) is one of the measures presented by the Assembly Democrats as part of a comprehensive legislative initiative to boost job creation and economic development throughout the state.
“A part of our responsibility to educate our children is to present them with all of the facts available,” said Riley (D-Cumberland/Gloucester/Salem). “Information on these industries will help students make informed career and school decisions for their futures.”
“As an educator you are in the position to inspire a child to pursue and achieve their dreams,” said Wagner. (D-Bergen/Passaic) “This legislation supplements that inspiration and focus career choices to fields that would surely increase their workforce in the next few years.”
The bill (A-3270) would require the Commissioner of Education, in consultation with the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development to develop a career exploration report providing students enrolled in grades 7 through 12 with information concerning employment in high-demand industries. Currently, the Bureaus of Labor Statistics project substantial job growth within the medical, labor, marketing and engineering industries over the next ten years.
“It is our obligation to introduce our children to a wide variety of options allowing them to decide for themselves what they would like to do,” said Mainor (D-Hudson). “It is also our responsibility to provide the education that will ensure success in their chosen field. This bill supports our promise to the children of New Jersey in preparing them for the future.”
“With an early interest and guidance, we can prepare our children for a rewarding career in any field they choose,” said Giblin. (D-Essex/Passaic). “By introducing them to careers in expanding industries, our future workforce will be able to find what many Americans today are desperately seeking: employment stability and opportunity for advancement.”
Under the bill, the report, at a minimum must include: a list of the fastest growing industries in the country and the state along with projected growth rates for the next 10 years as determined by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics; information on professional and occupational employment opportunities and the training required; and current employment rates/salary information. The bill directs the Commissioner to annually distribute the report to each school district, which will then provide a copy for each student and to the parents or guardians of each student in grades 7 through 12. The report will also be made available online.
The measure was approved 74-0; and it will now head to the Governor.