Senator Mike Braun praises VU's innovative workforce development - External Relations
Senator Mike Braun praises VU's innovative workforce development
August 17, 2020
VINCENNES, Ind. – U.S. Senator and prominent Indiana businessman Mike
Braun is applauding Vincennes University for fostering workforce
solutions that are developing a highly-skilled pipeline to keep the
United States running and the economy propelling forward.
Braun praised VU for being entrepreneurial.
“What VU is doing by thinking outside of the box and working with a
lot of businesses themselves is a big deal. That means VU is paying
attention to the marketplace. As long as I am a U.S. Senator and
involved in politics, I will stress education has to match up with the
demand out there and the businesses that are recruiting,” Braun said.
VU is heavily focusing on developing
skilled workers for high-priority industries and high-wage,
high-demand jobs. The University has numerous partnerships with major
companies. It is striving to grow the workforce through one-of-a-kind,
forward-thinking programs and cutting-edge training.
Braun visited the Vincennes main campus and met with VU leaders on
Aug. 14. He made stops at Jefferson Union; Updike Hall - Center for
Science, Engineering, and Mathematics; Technology Center; and Indiana
Center for Applied Technology (ICAT) during the visit.
He saluted VU for developing corporate partnerships and building
relationships with businesses and industries to where they are buying
in and directing employees to VU for training and education.
Senator Braun & VU President Chuck Johnson
VU President Chuck Johnson said, “Industry partnerships have been an
important part of VU’s mission for many years. VU is known for
adapting our program delivery to meet the needs of our partners in
both industry training and academic instruction. The one thing we will
never change is a relentless focus on quality instruction by faculty
with industry experience to ensure that VU graduates have the
knowledge and skills required of the 21st-century workforce.”
During Braun’s visit, he observed students in laboratories and
classrooms. He congratulates them on their choice of a pathway and has
a message for them.
“You are somewhat astute in finding a place like this that looks like
it is operating differently from most other higher education
institutions,” he said. “Whether you are an employee or student here,
you have flexibility here. You have a broad horizon to pick something
you like where it is matching up with something I would want as a
former CEO for you to do because those are the jobs we need.”
Braun repeatedly complimented VU for being a standout in higher
education and developing the employees that companies urgently need.
“When I see what VU is doing here, VU is meeting that need,” he said.
“Higher education, in general, has kind of given it lip service and
not put their efforts behind it.”
Braun possesses the perspective of a business owner and the immense
knowledge of what needs to happen to ensure the workforce demand for
much-needed talent is filled by candidates with the proper training
and education to work in a modern workplace that is continuously evolving.
Senator Braun & VU Vice President of Workforce
Development/Community Services David Tucker
Braun hails from one of the largest manufacturing areas in Indiana:
Dubois County. The Jasper native is the founder and former CEO of
Meyer Distributing, a company he built in his hometown that employs
hundreds nationwide. Braun also co-founded Crystal Farms, Inc., which
grew to become one of the largest turkey operations in the Midwest.
“I’m recently from the real world of enterprise and commerce,” Braun
said. “Places like Knox County, Dubois County, and Southern Indiana
are so much in the middle of manufacturing and logistics. From
everything I’ve seen at Vincennes University, this is a feeder system
for the kind of jobs we need.”
When it comes to considering a workforce future and career, Braun
encourages individuals to pursue these high-paying, in-demand jobs.
“I said to the education committee that we cannot stigmatize the jobs
that are better paying and are going to cost you a whole lot less. I
do not need more four-year degree applicants because we do not have
those jobs. We fill those jobs easily,” Braun said.