Confronting the Skills Gap: The Texas Experience

March 8, 2016
Austin, TX

Watch Event Video

Demographic changes are redefining the nation in many ways. From education to employment, who makes up the workforce is changing as well. At the same time, technological advances in industry require workers to be more highly skilled and advanced than workers of past generations. To ensure that the U.S. has the pipeline of skilled workers necessary to maintain the country’s global competitiveness, experts say that there is an urgent need to tackle the nation’s skills gap.

In this forum, The Atlantic brought together educators, employers and policy makers in Texas – one of the most diverse and economically prosperous states in the nation – for a discussion about workforce development efforts in the Lone Star State. How can Texas grow the job market for all of its citizens? What is needed to better equip the state’s new workers with the skills they need to be successful in today’s economy? How can Texas forge a workforce necessary to drive the state’s economic engine?

To see photos from this event, please visit our Facebook page.

Presented by

Atlantic Live



Note: All times are CT

  • Tuesday, March 08
  • 9:00 a.m.Welcome RemarksMargaret Low Smith, President, AtlanticLIVE
  • 9:05 a.m.The Atlantic Media/Pearson Opportunity Poll Presentation Ron Brownstein, Senior Editor, The Atlantic
  • 9:15 a.m.A Capital OpportunityThe Honorable Steve Adler, Austin Mayor
  • 9:45 a.m.A New Model for High School: Alamo AcademiesAnnette Enriquez, Graduate, Alamo Academies
    Troy Kettell, Chief Coordinator, Alamo Academies
    With Emily DeRuy, Senior Associate Editor, The Atlantic
  • 10:15 a.m.Pathways to SkillsAmanda Chiampi, Director of Sustainability, AT&T
    Bryan Miller, Principal, Eastside High School
    Juan Sanchez Muñoz, Senior Vice President and Vice Provost, Texas Tech University
    Jeffrey Parks, Dean of Business and Technology, San Jacinto College
    With Ron Brownstein, Senior Editor, The Atlantic
  • 10:50 a.m.Under the Dome: The Role of Government and the Skills Gap Andres Alcantar, Chairman, Texas Workforce Commission
    Raymund Paredes, Commissioner of Higher Education, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
    With Emily DeRuy, Senior Associate Editor, The Atlantic
  • 11:25 a.m.Closing RemarksMargaret Low Smith


Also in This Series

  • Education

    Confronting the
    Skills Gap:
    Defining the New Nevada

    Demographic shifts are redefining the nation in many ways. For Nevada this translates to an education system where the majority of the student body is of minority background. At the same time, the state is addressing a significant skills gap due to technological advances in industry. What actions will position the new Nevada for economic growth in light of these changes? In this Next America forum, The Atlantic will gather policy makers, educators and employers to explore Nevada's agenda on education and workforce development.

  • Education

    The Changing Face of Higher Education
    An Atlantic Next America Forum

    The Atlantic convened policymakers, educators, employers, students and higher education experts to examine what the future of higher education should look like as demographic and economic changes continue to transform our nation.

  • Energy/Sustainability

    Access to Power:
    Energy Equity in California

    The Atlantic was in Oakland to discuss access to clean energy for low-income and underserved communities.  

Upcoming Events

  • Economy/Business

    Atlantic Exchange featuring
    Timothy J. Mayopoulos

    Our series of intimate interviews with disruptive innovators and consequential political, community and business leaders continued with a discussion between Fannie Mae CEO Timothy J. Mayopoulos and Steve Clemons.


    WHAT'S NEXT? will imagine the future and articulate the transformative ideas that will give it shape.

  • Politics

    CityLab 2016

    CityLab gathers the world’s most creative mayors and city practitioners with artists, academics, funders, and other public and private sector leaders to focus on improving cities and spreading urban strategies that work.