LEXINGTON, Ky. - U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis and Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden were in Kentucky Thursday as part of a three-day tour of community colleges. They toured Bluegrass Community & Technical College in Lexington and advocated a new Obama administration initiative aimed at training more people for the workforce.
The issue is important to Dr. Biden, who teaches English a community college in Virginia.
"I've seen moms juggling jobs and child care launch themselves into new careers. I've seen workers who've gone as far as they can in their jobs get the skills they need to reach the next level in their fields. And I've seen recent high school graduates take another step on the road to a four-year degree."
Biden and Secretary Solis heard success stories of Kentucky community college students. Danny Anderson explained how a degree led to a career as an ER nurse.
"The automotive industry was just slowly declining. I was making a really good living with a high school diploma, but I knew I was going to have to make a change. So I went to Hopkinsville Community College and enrolled in their nursing program," said Anderson.
In his budget request announced earlier this month, President Obama proposed the creation of an $8 billion Community College to Career Fund. It would allow schools to enhance partnerships with local businesses for training and job placement.