ORONO – Maine’s Public Universities has published a Maine Employer Hiring Guide (http://www.maine.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Maine-Employer-Hiring-Guide-Fall-2018-DISTRIBUTE.pdf?0d0f03) as part of its ongoing response to the state’s workforce crisis. The guide includes referrals and resources that Maine employers can use to connect with professionally prepared, job-seeking students or candidates for internships. Approximately 32,000 students attend a University of Maine System institution over the course of an academic year.
The availability of professional workers, skilled technical workers, and entry-level workers are three-of-the-top-five issues business leaders say Maine and its elected officials must address according to the 2018 Making Maine Work Report. The report suggests Maine economic growth lags the nations’ because of the state’s demography and a labor force shortage that is putting a lid on potential job, income, and economic growth.
Maine’s universities are part of MaineSpark, a coordinated effort to grow the skills of Maine’s workforce so that 60 percent of workers have a credential of value by 2025. The universities are also attracting record numbers of out-of-state students to Maine, have created free pathways to a college degree for students with the greatest need, and have committed to double nursing enrollment in response to Maine’s nursing cliff.
Partnering with employers to create stronger connections to Maine career opportunities for the state’s 32,000 public university students is another component of the University response to the workforce crisis.
“We must take advantage of every opportunity to connect the students earning a world class education on our campuses to existing and emerging Maine career opportunities,” said James H. Page, Chancellor of the University of Maine System. “Together with our employer partners we will build a larger, more highly qualified workforce for Maine.”
Examples of university and employer partnership include: Expert service provided to nearly 1,300 Maine employers annually by the career service offices and professionals who can be contacted through the hiring guide; dozens of upcoming career fairs, networking events, and professional development opportunities that can be viewed in the hiring guide; and, 1,644 Maine jobs and internships posted so far this year by 570 Maine employers on the career links included in the hiring guide.
The University of Maine System Maine Employer Hiring Guide is a digital document that will be updated at the start of every semester and shared with partners in the employer community, career service agencies, and workforce and education partners.