The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

September 29, 2013

New arrivals a good sign

The Commercial-News

---- — District 118 school officials saw an influx of new families this year, as they often do as the school year begins, but noticed this year many of these families had moved to the area because a parent started a new job here. The officials and families talk about their situations in a story on today’s Page 1A.

Some readers might wonder how these new arrivals find jobs here when the latest unemployment rate for Vermilion County was listed at 11.3 percent for August by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. The answer basically comes down to a single word: skills.

Vermilion County and Danville always have job openings. Many of the industries in the area post job openings on a continual basis. But these aren’t jobs that just require someone willing to show up every day. These jobs require require special skills attained only through additional training that goes beyond high school.

Engineers, physicians, health care professionals, human resource personnel and other good jobs require applicants who have a solid education and have gone on to receive additional training — either academically or vocationally — for their specific task.

In past generations, a strong back and a willingness to work hard were enough to land someone a good job. Those days are gone. Today’s technology and procedures require workers with strong reading skills, the ability to evaluate information and make good decisions, and who are willing to continue their training throughout their careers.

Luckily, area residents who want to improve their skills can find help at Danville Area Community College. Job training and basic education classes are available for all ages, often at little or no cost to students.

It’s good to see new families moving into our community. And it’s good to see the opportunities that brought them here.