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Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity

Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity published on

Authored by Ececutive Office of the President

In his 2014 State of the Union address, as President Obama called for “a year of action” and predicted “a breakthrough year for America” in 2014, he emphasized the vital priority of equipping Americans with the skills needed to realize the economic opportunity that a renewed American economy could provide.

Two days later, in Waukesha, Wisconsin, he signed a Presidential Memorandum on Job-Driven Training for Workers, assigning Vice President Biden and the Secretaries of Labor, Commerce, and Education – working closely with the National Economic Council, the Domestic Policy Council, the Council of Economic Advisers, the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Office of Management and Budget – to develop within 180 days an action plan to make America’s workforce and training system “more job-driven, integrated and effective.” The Presidential Memorandum called for this action plan to include “concrete steps to make federal workforce and training programs and policies more focused on imparting relevant skills with job-market value, more easily accessed by employers and job seekers, and more accountable for producing positive employment and earning outcomes for the people they serve.”

Under the leadership of Vice President Biden, Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker, and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, the Administration engaged in an intensive review to identify, initiate, and implement actions to make federal employment and training programs and policies more job-driven and effective, consistent with existing statutory authority.

This review benefitted from the work not only of the Departments of Labor, Commerce, and Education, but also from the constructive engagement of Cabinet Secretaries and leaders of employment, training, education, and workforce development programs in the Departments of Agriculture, Defense, Energy, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Justice, Transportation, Veterans Affairs, the Social Security Administration, and Environmental Protection Agency, and from the expertise of the Department of the Treasury, the National Science Foundation, and the Office of Personnel Management.

The Presidential Memorandum on Job-Driven Training for Workers emphasized the importance of looking beyond our federal programs and agencies for answers and best practices, stating specifically that the Vice President and Secretaries “….shall consult with industry, employers and employer associations, state and local leaders, economic development organizations, worker representatives, education and training providers, workforce leaders, and relevant non-profit organizations.”

Publication Date:
Oct 29 2014
150301441X / 9781503014411
Page Count:
Binding Type:
US Trade Paper
Trim Size:
8.5″ x 11″
Black and White
Related Categories:
Political Science / Public Policy / Economic Policy


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