State Sen. James Maroney (D-14th District) and Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz recently met with Brian Bannon, owner and founder of ThermaXX Jackets; Jamie Scott, executive director of Manufacture CT; David Tuttle, director of the Platt Manufacturing Program; and State Rep. Dorinda Borer (D-115th) to discuss ways to improve the school-to-work pipeline, the manufacturing job opportunities currently available, the ways companies have stepped up to help during the coronavirus pandemic, and workforce development.

“One of the powers of state government is the ability to convene meetings, and bring people together to have important discussions,” said Maroney. “When there is a problem, the only way to move forward is to come up with a solution, and it starts with a discussion.”

Schools must have standards that are designed to provide readiness for whatever path a student chooses, Maroney said.

“We had representatives from the industry, the state’s Workforce Development Unit, education, Manufacture CT, and legislators coming together to discuss how we can continue to move Connecticut forward,” he said.

Bysiewicz said Connecticut has a long tradition of being a leader in the aerospace and high-tech manufacturing industries.

“While Connecticut has a first-rate workforce, it’s critical that we prepare for an influx of advanced manufacturing and aerospace jobs,” she said. “That’s why it’s critical that we continue to encourage our educational institutions — our colleges and technical schools — to partner with employers to nurture our school-to-workforce pipeline to meet the growing needs of the industry. This will help ensure that our students graduate career-ready and choose to pursue their careers here, buy their homes here, and raise their families here.”