Alaska January Economic Trends

Trends begins 2019 with the Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development annual jobs forecast. For this year, they forecast a small amount of overall job growth. Regionally, the Fairbanks area’s employment will grow the most, largely tied to the preparations to house two F-35 squadrons at Eielson Air Force base over the next couple of years as well as the accompanying personnel and their families.

Source: Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development

Report Highlights MSIs as ‘Underutilized Resource’ for Strengthening STEM Workforce

Providing early research experiences and creating supportive campus environments are among the promising and intentional strategies outlined in a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine focused on the impact and role of minority-serving institutions (MSIs) in producing graduates in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Dr. Kent McGuire

The academy’s report “Minority-Serving Institutions: America’s Underutilized Resource for Strengthening the STEM Workforce” reaffirms the relevance of MSIs and notes an urgent need to invest in the institutions to not only graduate and prepare MSI students for in-demand STEM careers, but also to sustain and enhance the nation’s economic prosperity, global competitiveness and national security, according to committee members sponsoring the report.

“This country can’t strengthen the STEM pipeline and bring more people into it without engaging the institutions where the students actually are,” said Dr. Kent McGuire, co-chair of the Committee on Closing the Equity Gap: Securing Our STEM Education and Workforce Readiness Infrastructure in the Nation’s Minority-Serving Institutions. “The conversation isn’t about, ‘Well, we can’t work with these schools because they don’t have this or they don’t have that.’ The conversation has to be, ‘We won’t actually be competitive internationally if we don’t help these schools do well what it is they do.’”

McGuire, who is also program director of education at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, added that, among other things, the report speaks to the variation among MSIs in how they serve students and also the challenges they face collectively and individually. America’s nearly 700 two- and four-year MSIs include historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), Tribal colleges and universities (TCUs), Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs) and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs).

Read the full article here. It also mentions the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP) at the University of Alaska Anchorage that embodies the strategies in the report by targeting students earlier in the pipeline – as early as sixth grade – and supporting and nurturing their intellectual growth and interest in STEM fields as they matriculate through their postsecondary education.

Source: Report Highlights MSIs as ‘Underutilized Resource’ for Strengthening STEM Workforce – Diverse Issues in Higher Education

Alaska November Economic Trends

NovTrends2018Each November, Trends estimates fish harvesting employment around the state. After a dismal 2016, jobs rebounded in 2017, with growth across most regions and species. Also this month is a look at injuries and illnesses in seafood processing, which has the highest rate among Alaska industries. The largest share of seafood processors in Alaska is in the Aleutians, whose eastern borough’s economy and population we profile in this issue.

Read the full issue here.

Source: Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development

UAF Mine Design Team Wins First Place in National Competition

Photo courtesy of Rajive Ganguli.

Steve Gabrielsen, Jeff Wetton, David Hernandez and Jed Hardcastle won first place in the 2018 Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Engineering Pittsburgh Coal Mining Institute of America mine design contest. Mining students from around the country submit their capstone design reports.

The trio submitted their senior design report from MIN 490, taught by Rajive Ganguli. The project centered on a Hecla-owned property in Mexico. The students consulted with Hecla professionals as they worked on the report.

For the past six years, MIN 490 mine design teams have placed in the top three five times, and have won the event twice.

Source: UAF mine design team wins first place in national competition – UAF news and information

Alaska October Economic Trends

TrendsOCT2018Every two years the Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development projects jobs by industry and occupation for a 10-year period, and the October Trends provides their newest set for 2016-2026. They project overall job growth at just over 5 percent, with the highest growth in health care.

Read the full issue here.

Source: Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development