It seems to be happening more and more in New Jersey. Young adults and their families take out loans and spend a small fortune on a college education, but once they get their diploma, those college grads can't find a job.


But now, one Garden State lawmaker has a plan to change things.

"From speaking with members in the business community, I know that there are needs out there, so we need to fit our higher education curriculum to meet the needs of the business world," says Assemblywoman Connie Wagner.

Her legislation would establish, within the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, a New Jersey Workforce Development and Education Commission, that would examine what skill-sets are needed for the private sector jobs of the future - and then share that information with high schools and public universities.

Better Training For The Real World

"We know we need more people in technology and the science fields, and the medicine fields," says Wagner. "So let's sit down and make sure we're not graduating too many people in areas where there will be no promise of employment."

She also stresses the idea would be to take the information that's gathered and translate that to changes in the classroom, starting in high school, or even middle school.

Wagner points out creating this kind of Commission would, for the first time, bring together the higher education world, labor and business to investigate what tomorrows jobs needs will entail.

Under the measure, the Commission would oversee the activities of two advisory boards - the Education Advisory Board and the Business and Workforce Advisory Board. The commission would review of the boards' findings, then develop a report identifying policies that would improve the ability of the State's schools and public institutions of higher education to meet the demands of tomorrow's employers.