Statehouse Online: Are millennials killing the manufacturing sector and the middle class?

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (WWLP) – Longmeadow State Senator Eric Lesser talked with 22News Statehouse reporter Jodi Reed to discuss ways to save the western Massachusetts economy. 

A theme of Wednesday’s talk was the role that vocational-technical education plays in boosting manufacturing jobs not just in Massachusetts but across the country. 

Senator Lesser spoke to the fact that children are put on waiting lists to get into tech schools across the state, yet public officials continue to give money to big corporations instead of manufacturing education. 

With thousands of high paying manufacturing jobs open in western mass Senator Lesser hopes to reinvest the money that GE paid back to the state in voc-tech programs. 

The millennial generation is often mischaracterized as entitled and lazy, if that is the case how do you save the manufacturing industry if no one will work in it? 

Through education and destigmatization, Senator Lesser believes that there are still thousands of young, middle and even older people who would love to receive formal training to boost their pay grade. 

By working with your hands and having a finished product to be proud of, Senator Lesser hopes people will see the benefits of working in the manufacturing sector. 

Student as early as elementary school are pushed to go to college but if we change what we view as successful, we could change the way students achieve success. 

Senator Lesser said he would like to start educating students at a young age about the options they have to achieve success. 

By taking students to manufacturing facilities, Senator Lesser hopes to show them that they can have a fulfilling career without accruing thousands of dollars in debt. 

In western Massachusetts, and across the country the only way we prevent the class divide from spreading even further is by reinvesting in manufacturing jobs. 

Senator Lesser said he will continue his fight to keep the middle class alive through voc-tech training.

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