CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Opportunity does not require a move across the state line. That’s the message of the new “My State, My Life” career path campaign.
Governor Earl Ray Tomblin said the campaign’s message is that West Virginia’s current middle school and high school students need to get ready for the jobs that will be available in the Mountain State in the coming years.
“The whole idea is to get them thinking, right now, about what they would like to do in the next two, three or five years down the road and make that decision and, hopefully, keep them in school, cut down on the truancy,” he said.
“A whole variety of negative things can happen to a student who really doesn’t have a plan in mind.”
Members of the Governor’s Workforce Planning Council created what will be a statewide advertising push to promote education and job training beyond high school.
Tomblin said he believes today’s students can build their dream careers in West Virginia but, to do that, they need to take charge of their own lives and education now.
“We’ve got to have people with specific skills,” Tomblin said on Thursday’s MetroNews “Talkline” of West Virginia’s economic future — a future that, he said, includes advances within the natural gas industry in northern West Virginia and the possibility of the development of a petrochemical complex, with a cracker, in Wood County.
“It’s not only going to be oil and gas industry jobs, but it’s also going to be in education, it’s going to be in health care, the service industry. I think that there’s a possibility out there, for whatever a student wants to get into, that they can do it,” Gov. Tomblin said.
Tomblin has been promoting the “My State, My Life” campaign with school stops in both Wayne County and Harrison County this week.
He said he tells students, “You’ve got an opportunity in this state unlike, probably, better than any other time. We’ve had, over the years, so many people and families who’ve had to leave this state to find work.”
Print materials promoting “My State, My Life” will be distributed to students, parents and teachers throughout West Virginia, while ads will appear on television and radio, in movie theaters and on social media through both Twitter and Facebook.
Editor’s Note: The “My State, My Life” video was produced by Pikewood Creative, a division of West Virginia Radio Corporation which owns MetroNews.