Kaine talks economy, jobs in Hampton Roads

U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine visited the Portsmouth campus of Tidewater Community College in Hampton Roads. Throughout the visit, Kaine shared his strategies to develop the world’s most skilled workforce that include raising standards for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) curriculum, career and technical education, and workforce training.

“Virginia has been a national leader in the talent race, but unfortunately the United States has been falling behind other nations in the global talent race,” said Kaine. “Our nation has a lot of big challenges we have to solve in the right way, but I truly believe that we will not have the long-term economic success we want unless we recommit to being the most talented place in the world. If I’m chosen to represent Virginia in the U.S. Senate, I hope to specialize in these talent issues because I believe they are absolutely critical to our nation’s economic future.”

Following a tour of TCC’s facilities, Kaine participated in a roundtable discussion with more than a dozen students, faculty and administrators about the importance of equipping our citizens with the skills they need to succeed in the jobs and industries of a global economy. Kaine knows community colleges and career/technical training programs can play a central role in preparing young people, retraining or advancing the skills of American workers, and helping veterans transition their skills gained during service to civilian applications. As governor, he created nine Governor’s Career and Technical Academies in Virginia and worked with a bipartisan coalition to invest in educational opportunities and raise standards across the Commonwealth. In 2008, he worked in a bipartisan way to pass the largest higher education capital bond package in Virginia history, expanding classrooms and labs at Virginia’s colleges and community colleges, including TCC.

“It is no coincidence that Virginia’s economic transformation has coincided with the rise of the Virginia Community College System,” said Kaine. “Community colleges play a critical role in keeping our state and nation economically competitive. They help folks from all walks of life gain new skills, improve on existing skills, and increase the talent and competitiveness of our workforce.”

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