What are you going to do about the shortage of trained IT workers?


To keep up with a fast-moving, fast-changing economy, workers

must have the ability to continue learning and upgrading their skills for

a lifetime. That is why Gore has focused on the next great frontier in American

education: dramatically expanding opportunities for lifelong learning and

worker training.

Today, many of our most advanced industries are facing shortages of

the skilled workers they need. Gore has proposed expanding programs so that

every adult who needs training to adapt to the new economy can get it — and can prosper from the technological change. He has also proposed the

creation of a new 401(J) Job Training Account so that we can keep workers

trained for a lifetime. Gore believes that no person should be denied a

chance to succeed in the Information Age.


Bush has proposed an aggressive policy agenda to help our nation

develop and maintain a workforce prepared to seize the opportunities of

the high-technology economy. One important way to maintain the competitiveness

of our high-technology companies is allowing them to recruit more workers

with special skills through an increase in the current limit on H-1B visas.

Temporary highly skilled workers are admitted under H-1B visas, which

in 1999 were limited to 115,000. The cap for this year has already been

reached, creating a situation that could hurt high-tech industries that

face a shortage of computer engineers, software programmers and technicians.

Also, as discussed earlier, Bush has a far-reaching plan to equip schools

and educators with resources and tools to effectively teach our nation's

children to be members of the new technological era. This will potentially

provide millions of new, educated workers to fill the rapidly expanding

core of high-tech jobs.


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