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Category: Opportunity

How to Create Jobs for Young People in West Virginia

West Virginia is full of incredible outdoor adventure, beautiful mountains and endless opportunities. Recently, the Mountain State became home to the country’s 63rd national park: The New River Gorge. The sweeping vistas give way to hiking trails, blooming rhododendrons and some of the best whitewater rafting in the world. This new designation will bring in outside tourism at a scenic, federal property while providing an employment opportunity for locals – ... Continue Reading »

More Deaths Than Births In West Virginia

Young adults are the lifeblood of a state’s future—but what happens when that lifeblood runs dry?

It’s no secret that young people are leaving West Virginia. In fact, U.S. Census Bureau data confirms we’ve now lost a higher percentage of residents than any other state in the country. And with one of the highest numbers of elderly folks in the nation, we’ve ... Continue Reading »

The Step up for women program is helping to close the gender gap

In West Virginia, good-paying jobs are not plentiful. Add the gender wage gap that still exists for women overall, and the job market can look bleak for women in the Mountain State. The Step Up for Women Program from West Virginia’s Women Work organization aims to change that. Over this 12-week training course women learn the construction basics. And many SUFW program graduates continue their instruction through skilled construction ... Continue Reading »

Wage Stagnation in Nine Charts

West Virginia is going in the wrong direction like much of the country regarding wages and benefits. Our leaders need to value jobs that bring higher wages and good healthcare. Minimum wage jobs that don’t lift families out of poverty are not the solution. We need an economy that supports West Virginians who don’t just want to live in the Mountain State, but thrive. Learn more about wage ... Continue Reading »

Raising the minimum wage to $15 by 2025 will restore bargaining power to workers and support the pandemic recovery

WAGES HAVE BEEN STAGNANT FOR A DECADE Congress has failed for more than a decade to raise the federal minimum wage. While there have been some wage increases at the state and local level, the current federal minimum wage stands at $7.25. WORKER WAGES REMAIN AT 1963 LEVELS WHEN ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION In 1963, back when John Kennedy was president, the applicable minimum wage varied by industry between $1.00 and $1.25 per hour, and there ... Continue Reading »

Mountaineers Are Always Free

…or are they?

We all love and appreciate the natural beauty of West Virginia – especially our majestic mountains. We call ourselves the Mountain State. We sing about our West Virginia Hills and our Mountain Mama. We proclaim that Mountaineers Are Always Free. On the flip side, our mountains often present us with challenges. Sometimes getting from here to there can be difficult – especially in bad weather. We may ... Continue Reading »

Apprenticeship Training

A Debt-Free Alternative to a Four-Year College

News reports are full of stories about young people burdened with crushing student loan debt. Celebrities are in trouble for their attempts to bribe college officials to admit their offspring to high-profile schools. Colleges are cutting programs to make ends meet, and many alumni are questioning the return on their hefty college investment. Amid all this bad news, many are overlooking ... Continue Reading »

Community Colleges and The Workforce Sustain Each Other

One Size Does Not Fit All

Community Colleges Offer Educational Options

The traditional four-year college experience isn’t for everyone. Some students aren’t yet set on a course of study, while others are looking for a more affordable education. Some choose career paths that require only a two-year degree, while others may choose to step right into the working world. Still others may use their ... Continue Reading »