Courtesy of MCT
With what Gov. John Kasich calls one of the best job-creating states in the U.S., Ohio State students might have better chances finding a job in Ohio now compared to last year.
Kasich delivered his State of the State address Tuesday in Steubenville at Wells Academy, a top-performing elementary school in Ohio.
Kasich spoke about job progress in Ohio and said the state of Ohio went from being the third-worst job creator to one of the top job creators in the nation.
“A year ago, Ohio ranked 48 in job creation. We trailed only Michigan and California,” Kasich said. “Michigan, who has the automotive industry, and California is filled with a bunch of whack-a-doodles. Who would have thought we would have been third worst?”
Kasich said in the last 10 years Ohio lost 600,000 jobs, and last year Ohio’s deficit was $8 billion, which Kasich stated was the “largest deficit in the history of Ohio.” Kasich also said many students left the state after graduation to search for jobs elsewhere.
Within a year, Kasich said Ohio has created 43,000 more jobs and Ohio is ranked No. 1 as job creator in the Midwest and No. 9 in the nation.
In a statement from State Rep. Tracy Maxwell Heard (D-Columbus), Heard said.
“Kasich said we went from being the No. 48 job creator in the country to the No. 9, and he did this while touting his success in bringing businesses to Ohio. For whatever part of that is true, great,” Heard said. “What we did not hear Gov. Kasich mention was what he was doing to create access to capital for existing and small businesses. What we know is that 85 percent of all new jobs are created from existing businesses.”
Kasich attributes some of the success to his JobsOhio program. JobsOhio is “designed to lead Ohio’s job-creation efforts by singularly focusing on attracting and retaining jobs, with an emphasis on strategic industry sectors,” according to jobs-ohio.com
JobsOhio focuses primarily on increasing jobs in manufacturing, automotive industry, engineering, logistics and health care.
The JobsOhio program is starting “to bear fruit” Kasich said, but Kasich also called on Ohio parents to encourage their kids to go into manufacturing.
“Manufacturing is coming back,” Kasich said. “Encourage your kids. If God created them to make things, let them make things.”
Kasich also said he wants universities to encourage students to seek studies in professions that can build Ohio’s economy.
“Our universities need to focus kids on realistic job propositions,” Kasich said.
Paul Beck, a professor in political science at OSU, said it is typical for candidates to try and “keep our young people at home,” however most students are not interested in pursuing the job professions Ohio needs.
“(These jobs) are typically not jobs college graduates are attracted to,” Beck said. “(However), jobs in health care offer a lot of prospects.”
Despite Kasich’s hopes in job creation and employment in Ohio, students are skeptical to the reality of the job market after they graduate.
Monti Taylor, a second-year in biology, said she thinks it is an individual’s fault for not having a job.
“I feel like there are jobs out there, (but) maybe it’s not something you want to do,” Taylor said.
Other students do not believe unemployment has been resolved.
“I think that you know how a lot of people say we are getting out of the recession, but I think that the numbers still show that unemployment is a problem that hasn’t really been resolved. And that it’s still a major issue that needs to be dealt with,” said Mike Lemon, a first-year in industrial design. “Statistics on unemployment have been subject to seasonal adjustments and all these factors that people don’t really hear about, so a lot of times it’s kind of an adjusted number, not really a flat-out one.”
Lemon said he is unsure as to whether he will stay in Ohio after he graduates.
“Personally I’m a follow-the-job kind of guy,” Lemon said.
Taylor said she is not sure whether or not she will stay in Ohio either.
“I don’t know,” Taylor said. “I’m not from Ohio so I might go back to Alabama.”
Stephanie Martin contributed to this story.