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Topic: Re: PART IV: The Jobs of Tomorrow
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by way of Gene Klotz

Posts: 47
Registered: 12/4/04
Re: PART IV: The Jobs of Tomorrow
Posted: Aug 31, 2000 2:24 PM
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Where's Part III? ;->

Patsy Wang-Iverson
Mid-Atlantic Eisenhower Consortium (
Research for Better Schools
444 N. Third Street
Philadelphia, PA 19123-4107
vox: 215.574.9300 x264
fax: 215.574.0133

Jerry Becker
<> To:
Sent by: cc:
owner-amte@esunix.e Subject: PART IV: The Jobs of Tomorrow

08/31/00 01:43 PM
Please respond to

From Rethinking Schools, Winter, 1999/2000, Volume 14, Number 2, p. 8.

The Jobs of Tomorrow

By Barbara Miner

In his keynote speech to the National Education Summit, IBM chairman and
CEO, Louis Gerstner Jr., made several statements that were essential to his
analysis. These statements, in turn, were widely reported in the media. One
of the bedrocks of Gerstner's analysis is that the jobs of tomorrow will be
in high-skill, high-wage occupations. "Jobs that today required
low-to-moderate skills - and pay low-to-moderate wages - are in decline,
while demand soars for highly skilled applicants who command higher pay,"
Gerstner said.

Employment Projections 1996-2006 show a different story. In fact, jobs
merely requiring short or moderate on-the-job training, such as clerical
and service jobs, will account for more than half of all jobs in 2006.

"Employers will hire more than three times as many cashiers as engineers,"
columnist Richard Rothstein noted in an article in the Oct. 27 New York
Times. "They will need more than twice as many food-counter workers,
waiters, and waitresses than all the systems analysts, computer engineers,
mathematicians, and database administrators combined. We will be hiring
more nurses, but even more janitors and maids."

One of the sources of confusion is that while professions such as computer
engineering will increase percentagewise, the number is relatively small to
begin with. So, as Rothstein notes, one can proclaim that computer
engineering and science employment "will increase by a whopping 100% while
food service grows by only 11%. But computer science is a relatively small
field, so new positions generate rapid growth rates. There are more
waitresses today, so smaller percentage growth yields more new jobs."

It's also important to realize that high-skilled jobs are subject to a
fluctuating supply and demand that has more to do with corporate profits
than education - as Gerstner well realizes.

Gerstner came to IBM in 1993 (his pervious corporate post was head of RJR
Nabisco, where he helped oversee the Joe Camel campaign which made Camels
the most prominent cigarette among children.) In line with the corporate
downsizing then sweeping the nation, he fired 90,000 highly trained
employees, about one-third of IBM's workforce. "That was in addition to the
other 183,000 quality employees that IBM fired before Gerstner arrived,"
notes Clinton Boutwell in his book Shell Game: Corporate America's Agenda
for Schools (Phi Delta Kappa, 1997).

Jerry P. Becker
Dept. of Curriculum & Instruction
Southern Illinois University
Carbondale, IL 62901-4610 USA
Phone: (618) 453-4241 [O]
(618) 457-8903 [H]
Fax: (618) 453-4244

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