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Reskilling the Mid-Career Workforce

Connecting people, their skills, and the jobs that are out there

The first WorkingNation Town Hall focused on problems stemming from long-term unemployment of middle-aged workers and solutions on getting them back to work.
WorkingNation’s first town hall focuses on the widening skills gap that middle-aged workers are up against, and how it impacts their ability to return to work. Esteemed experts gather to discuss the unique challenges that individuals 45 and older face when re-entering the workforce, as well as solutions that could help end long-term unemployment.

It began with WorkingNation’s stark warning about an impending employment crisis.

But the mood at our first town hall on Reskilling the Mid-Career Workforce shifted from concern to understanding to laughter as our panel of business leaders and academic experts discussed solutions to a crowd of more than 200 at the Victoria J. Mastrobuono Theater in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

Tuesday’s event, which began with WorkingNation’s animated short The Slope of the Curve and featured the debut of a WorkingNation mini-documentary about the New Start Career Network, was filmed for New Jersey Public Television to be aired this month.

Presented in conjunction with the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University and moderated by PBS NewsHour anchor Hari Sreenivasan, the town hall focused on the challenges of long-term unemployment due to automation or offshoring of jobs, especially for workers over the age of 45.

“Other than the death of a family member or close friend, losing a job is the worst thing that can happen to someone,” Heldrich Center Director Carl Van Horn said.

The trauma of losing a job and the added embarrassment of a long job search – fraught with tricky application processes – can have a cumulative effect on older workers, leading them to drop out of the job hunt feeling worthless and uncompetitive. This causes mental health problems, disrupt families and increases the social burden to communities who have to deal with the compounded ills.

Town Halls is our signature digital series that shines the spotlight on the most innovative initiatives helping to train and re-skill Americans for the most in-demand jobs now and in the future.

Town Halls

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