Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Opting Back In

Lisa Belkin wrote in the NY Times today about how the labor shortage has forced some employers to woo mothers who had previously "opted out". Read After Baby, Boss Comes Calling.

That sounds so logical and enlightened. Compare and contrast the attitudes of the employers profiled in that article with The State of the National Security Space Workforce. There is a huge shortage of US citizens with advanced degrees in science and engineering. The shortage is especially acute for people my age and experience level.
Although the aerospace and defense industry has made a concerted effort to attract new employees, there is a large gap in the 30–40-year-old range, where it is estimated that supply is actually 29–46 percent below demand. These are the people with theoretical as well as practical knowledge—the individuals who will be the program managers, both in industry and on the government side in the next 6–10 years, and the concern is that there may not be enough of them to fill vital positions
Several suggestions are given. Yet, pay attention to the last paragraph.
Nevertheless, more needs to be done at the 30–40-year-old range. These are individuals who either left or never came to the defense industry during the early 1990s. Attracting back these individuals from alternate industries is the challenge for the United States to meet in the next 5–10 years.
There is no mention of luring back mothers that were forced opted out.

Aside:
I am writing this from a hotel room in La Jolla, CA where I am attending Geoinformatics 2007. Mark and Iris will join me Friday evening. Saturday, Mark wants to do the century (100 mile bike ride) in Encinitas. Iris asked me to take her to the San Diego Zoo on Saturday.

I have to get back in time for the Ruth Asawa technique workshop on Sunday. Mark and Iris will spend that time at the JPL Open House. The Huntington Garden Annual Plant Sale is also this weekend. No housework will get done this weekend at chez BadMom.

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