Message from Secretary Hitt: S.C.'s greatest asset

With the nation's ninth fastest-growing state population, one of South Carolina's key assets to economic prosperity is our people. We're adding approximately 60,000 to our population each year - an average of nearly 170 residents each day.

To ensure the Palmetto State's workforce meets the needs of both existing and future industry, S.C. Commerce, in partnership with key allies, is making a concerted effort to be innovative and creative in the way we reach out to and train our workforce.

Team S.C. has had several unique opportunities to share our story in recent weeks. Last week, we welcomed U.S. Commerce Deputy Secretary Karen Dunn Kelley and members of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy at Volvo Cars in Berkeley County for a panel discussion on S.C.'s collaborative workforce development approach. The group discussed critical issues facing our state's workforce, current programs in place to assist students, workers and companies, as well as the future of workforce development.

And, earlier this week, the South Carolina Association of Counties' annual conference, hosted in Hilton Head Island, provided a forum for similar discussion with officials representing S.C.'s 46 counties. From ManuFirst SC to SC Codes to the recent establishment of the S.C. Fraunhofer USA Alliance, by working together on statewide and local levels, we will better be able to implement these latest workforce initiatives.

Moving forward, Team S.C. remains committed to ensuring that South Carolinians - both lifelong and new residents - have the education and skills necessary to fill the most in-demand jobs. By creating a pipeline where individuals have access to training, we're able to successfully tackle any workforce recruitment or training challenges that stand in our way.