Access to Good Jobs Through Education and Training - : Content

Access to Good Jobs Through Education and Training

To succeed in today’s changing economy, workers need advanced skills and credentials. Better jobs require more skills, and all workers need access to education and training to increase their earning power. We must fortify workers with the skills they need to get a job in this challenging labor market.

For women—who are in the majority in low-wage jobs—moving into degree programs targeted to Maine’s high-demand industries is critical.1

Education and Training is Critical for Maine's Workforce and Economy


Maine’s economic recovery—and, ultimately, economic growth—will require a greater number of skilled workers.2 That’s why programs like Maine’s Competitive Skills Scholarship Program (CSSP) are so important. The CSSP is a program, administered by the Department of Labor, which provides low-wage earners the opportunity to obtain the skills training and education necessary to access higher-wage employment.3 Since taking effect in 2008, CSSP has enabled low-income and unemployed workers to participate in postsecondary education and certificate and training programs–expanding their opportunities and earning potential as well as expanding Maine’s competitive workforce.4 Individuals who have graduated from the program are finding employment in high-growth areas and attain nearly double their previous earnings.5 With the program currently serving 475 individuals, demand for this successful program is greater than its capacity.6 


Expand and Build Upon Programs that Work


Post-secondary education and advanced training increases women's incomes. And, Maine employers are demanding a skilled workforce in order to expand. We can meet these two vital goals by expanding the CSSP and looking for additional ways to provide pathways to higher education for low-wage workers. This will be critical to women’s economic security and to Maine’s economic recovery.

  1. Butler, Sandra S., Lusia S. Deprez, John Dorrer, and Auta M. Main. "Investing in Human Capital in Difficult Times: Maine's Competitive Skills Scholarship Program." Maine Policy Review 19.1 (2010): 58-69. Print. 61
  2. "Competitive Skills Scholarship Program: 2008 Enrollment Profile." Maine Department of Labor Center for Workforce Research and Information
  3. Butler, 62
  4. Maine Women's Policy Center, and Maine Equal Justice Partners. "Succeeding in the New Economy: Pathways to Prosperity for Maine Workers." (2008).
  5. IButler, 66
  6. Ibid

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