Everywhere you turn, you read stories about job shortages and people being unemployed.
But you may not know that some industries can't find the employees they need.
Each year for the past seven years, the ManpowerGroup has asked employers to name which employees are most in demand. For all but one of those years, engineering has been at or near the top of the poll.
These numbers are in direct conflict with a recent report by an economist at West Liberty University, which states that, outside of computer engineering, all engineering degrees are experiencing a labor surplus.
Unfortunately, the West Liberty report looks only at employment opportunities in the state.
At West Virginia University, where I serve as Glen H. Hiner Dean of the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, our responsibilities go beyond that.
We have the responsibility of educating our students and preparing them for their lives, wherever they choose to live them.
Thirty years ago, the National Academy of Engineering reports, the United States, Japan, and China, each educated the same number of engineers annually, about 70,000.
Today, across Asia more than 21 percent of students are graduating in engineering fields. Across Europe, that number is just under 12 percent.
In the United States, that number is 4.5 percent.
To advance our economy and our society, we need to create the next generation of technological innovations.
And for that, we need engineers.