New workforce data highlights the University of Alaska’s impact on preparing students for Alaska jobs & good wages

An in-depth analysis of nine major Alaska industries captures the impact that university programs have in preparing its students for jobs in Alaska’s workforce. The reports answer key questions related to the largest and fastest growing occupations that require some postsecondary education and highlights important employment indicators such as average wages earned, where UA grads work in Alaska, what industries they work in, and how they help boost the Alaska hire rate.

The workforce development and institutional research offices at the University of Alaska partnered with the Research and Analysis Section in the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development to create the reports, which demonstrate UA graduate outcomes in nine key fields — administration and finance, aviation, construction, fisheries and marine science, health, information technology, mining, oil and gas, and teacher education. The reports can be found at https://www.alaska.edu/ research/wd/reports.php.

“We are in the business of creating Alaska’s workforce,” UA Interim President Pat Pitney told the Senate Education Committee on Feb. 3, adding that 70 to 90 percent of UA graduates stay in Alaska and find employment. 

The health report, for example, shows that of more than 2,300 nursing graduates in both 2-year and 4-year programs, 89 percent remain in Alaska after graduation and are employed at an average wage of $70,000.

Teri Cothren, University of Alaska Associate Vice President Workforce Development, said: “This data demonstrates the success of our core programs and how we are contributing to Alaska’s high‐demand industries and economy.” 

In preparing the reports, the university analyzed labor market information to identify the largest and fastest-growing occupations in the nine industries, then linked related UA programs to those jobs. Detailed employment and wage information was extracted from employer quarterly reports filed with the Dept. of Labor. That means the numbers are based on a comprehensive match of all graduates who remain and work in Alaska.

“The economic value of training and education is abundantly clear in the data,” said Dan Robinson, Chief Labor Research & Analysis, Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development. “More education and training also correlate strongly with lower unemployment rates.”  

Median earnings, for example, jumped from $35,328 for high school graduates to $44,619 for Alaskans with an associate degree, $57,708 for those with a bachelor’s degree, and $77,402 for holders of graduate or professional degrees. 

Read the full article here.

Source: UA News Center

Federal Aviation Administration Awards nearly $2.6M in Drone Grants to Universities

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will give nearly $2.6 million in grants to universities for research into drones. The FAA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Transportation, said the universities will comprise the agency’s Air Transportation Center of Excellence for Unmanned Aircraft Systems(AUS), also known as the Alliance for System Safety of UAS through Research Excellence (ASSURE).

According to the FAA, there are 1.7 million drones in the AUS fleet, which is expected to grow to 2.2 million by 2023. The grants are for enhancing the safe and successful integration of drones into American airspace.

“The research funded by these grants will provide valuable data as the Department leads the way to chart a course for the safe integration of drones into our national airspace,” Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said. “In addition to providing grants, we are also supporting activities that provide operational experience like the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration Pilot Program, all of which move us more quickly toward full integration.”

The four different grants are provided for specific projects and goals. Grants were distributed to 14 universities across the country, including the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Source: Federal Aviation Administration awards nearly $2.6M in drone grants to universities – Transportation Today

What is NCCER? – Alaska Safety Alliance

What is NCCER?

  • A not-for-profit education foundation created in 1996 as The National Center for Construction Education and Research (dba.NCCER). It was developed with the support of more than 125 construction CEO’s, associations, and academic leaders who come together to transform training for the construction industry. Twenty-four years ago, NCCER started with just 5 content areas and now twenty-four years later they have developed curricula for more than 70 craft areas and completed a series of more than 70 assessments offered in over 6,000 NCCER-accredited training assessment locations across the United States.
  • NCCER develops standardized construction and maintenance curriculum and assessments with portable credentials. These credentials are tracked through NCCER’s Registry System that allows organizations and companies to track the qualifications of their craft professionals by maintaining their records in a secure database.
  • NCCER’s workforce development process of accreditation , instructor certification. standardized curriculum, registry, assessment, and certification is a key component in the industry’s workforce development efforts. NCCER also drives multiple initiatives to enhance career development and recruitment efforts for the industry, primarily through its Build Your Future initiative. http://www.BYF.org

Read the full blog post here.

Source: What is NCCER? – Alaska Safety Alliance

Smoke and Gears

Greg Perez, a diesel power technology student, works on an engine during a fall 2017 class. (Photo by James Evans / University of Alaska Anchorage)

For the past three semesters, diesel power technology students have been busy fixing a donated fire engine in the UAA garage. So while some students claim their class projects are life-or-death, this one actually qualifies.

“Every piece has to work together perfectly or else you have a catastrophic failure,” said Ben Stewart, a diesel student who worked on the fire engine.

The stakes are high because the donated truck will return to service with the Seldovia Volunteer Fire Department. It’s a beneficial partnership: students gain valuable experience, while a small community gains a valuable emergency vehicle.

“These are great real-world projects for our students,” noted Darrin Marshall, director of the Department of Automotive and Diesel Technology.

The engine in question originally served the Anchorage Fire Department until it overheated at a rescue call. Department mechanics determined that, in a city with nearly 300,000 tax payers, it was better to replace the older engine than repair it. A community like Seldovia, though, with 0.1 percent of Anchorage’s population, would really benefit from a donation like this.

Read the full article here.

Source: Smoke and gears – Green & Gold News

Studying Horsepower in the Digital Age

HorsepowerJustin Gentz loves to go fast. He built his first engine when he was a sophomore in high school. Now, through UAA’s GM Automotive Service Educational Program, Gentz is learning to work on the latest in automotive technology — including some very fast cars.

Watch the short video here.

Source: Studying horsepower in the digital age – Green & Gold News