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This should be a great time to look for work in the United States. The official unemployment rate has fallen below four percent for the first time since July of 2001. More companies are offering hiring bonuses to attract workers, and the retirement of baby boomers is opening more jobs for young adults.
However, the numbers are not as rosy as they look. While jobs are plentiful, good jobs are increasingly hard to find, especially for those without access to higher education. As technology and global competition continue to reshape the work landscape, too many of the new jobs are low-wage, with few benefits or possibilities for advancement, while the better jobs require education and skills that remain beyond the reach of way too many Americans.
In Colorado, the state is working with the Markle Foundation, LinkedIn, and Microsoft to unite business and educators to help prepare young people for the jobs in information technology, advanced manufacturing, and health care, and to ensure that the paths to better jobs are clearly understood and open to all. Twenty state governors agreed earlier this year to launch similar initiatives in their states.