Mar. 11, 2019

HARRISBURG – The House Education Committee today reported out legislation authored by Rep. Zach Mako (R-Lehigh/Northampton) to increase student awareness about workforce needs and opportunities.

The bill is part of a bipartisan package of legislation focusing on efforts to enhance the state’s workforce development system to help students, underemployed and unemployed adults, as well as returning military, veterans and others enter fulfilling, family-sustaining careers.

“We have heard from employers who are having difficulty finding qualified applicants to fill positions,” Mako said. “My legislation will help educate students about employment opportunities outside of a four-year degree. We need students to understand there are many good-paying jobs that do not require a traditional college education.”

House Bill 297 would require school entities to allow career representatives from technical schools, trade schools, community colleges, businesses and industry access to disseminate information about employment opportunities and to recruit students. In addition, the Pennsylvania Department of Education, in collaboration with the Department of Labor and Industry, would annually develop or update materials outlining workforce needs, including training opportunities and future earning potential. Schools would then distribute these materials to their students. Finally, schools must provide at least one opportunity each year for students in grades four through 12 to receive age-appropriate career information individually or in a group setting.

The bill now goes to the full House for its consideration.

The 183rd District includes South Whitehall (part), Washington and Whitehall (part) townships and Slatington Borough in Lehigh County. It also consists of Allen, Lehigh and Moore (part) townships, and North Catasauqua, Northampton and Walnutport boroughs in Northampton County.

Representative Zachary Mako
183rd Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Tracy Polovick
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