For years the Legislature and universities have conned us about the value of a baccalaureate degree, when these students would have been better off in the two-year system. Our technical colleges are where the major job growth potential is.
We need to limit university admissions to students who are in the top 50 percent of each high school class, who don’t need remedial classes and who score at least 910 on the SAT or 19 on the ACT. And we should send the rest of the students to the two-year system, where they, and we, will get their money’s worth.
Just as we were going to press, the Romney-Ryan campaign released an energy plan that sets forth what purports to be a bold policy goal: to achieve North American energy independence in just eight years. That goal is interesting in its own right. But it’s even more interesting against the current backdrop of economic and policy trends affecting energy and utility companies. And make no mistake, energy policy issues are heating up again ... The November elections are set for just two months after this issue of Fortnightly hits readers’ mailboxes. Given the major energy policy issues now in play, Romney’s stated positions merit a closer look.
We elected not to postpone the meeting, and the commission filed the temporary injunction restraining us from offering opinions or voting on any issue dealing with navigation, depth, dredging, wastewater and dredge disposal or other issues related to use of the Savannah River for oceangoing commerce.
|Santee Cooper's Conway|
coal-fired power plant
The immediate impact will cost several dozen jobs at the Conway plant, but considering the importance of the company's electric supply to several major industrial plants in the region, more jobs could be lost. Santee Cooper supplies Alcoa and Nucor Steel, along with other manufacturing plants in the region. It seems hard to imagine that reducing the utility's ability to generate power would be good for its customers. Alcoa, which operates an aluminum plant in Goose Creek, is already considering leaving, with electric rates being a key concern.
It's possible the new rules could also impact South Carolina Electric and Gas, the state's other major electricity supplier, which operates coal-fired plants in South Carolina to generate about half of its total electricity output. Presently, it's still uncertain how the new regulations will impact its capacity, but if plants were to close, it would reduce the state's capacity for some time to come - at least until the ongoing expansion of their V.C. Summer nuclear plant in Fairfield County is complete, which is several years away.
Stay tuned folks, but keep the flashlights close at hand, just in case ...
"We are not telling Boeing they can't build planes in South Carolina. We are talking about one specific piece of work: three planes a month. If they keep those three planes a month in Washington, there is no problem." Beyond the ten planes, she said, Boeing could build whatever it wants in South Carolina.
We contacted several others who were involved with the ongoing Boeing efforts and found no support for the NLRB "proposal". One source accused the NLRB of attempting to act as a taxpayer-subsidized bargaining agent for labor unions, calling it "mafia-style extortion".
This is a republishing of an op-ed by Governor Haley which originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal challenging President Obama to explain his position on the action of the Obama-appointed National Labor Relations Board to block Boeing's North Charleston plant:
In choosing to manufacture in my state, Boeing was exercising its right as a free enterprise in a free nation to conduct business wherever it believed would best serve both the bottom line and the employees of its company. This is not a novel or complicated idea. It's called capitalism.
Boeing has since poured billions of dollars into a new, state-of-the art facility in South Carolina's picturesque Low Country along the Atlantic coast. It has created thousands of good jobs and joined the long tradition of distinguished and employee-friendly corporations that have found a home, and a partner, in the Palmetto State.
Click here to read more ...The National Labor Relations Board is seeking a court order that in effect would require Boeing Co. to move its second 787 assembly line to Washington state.
The second line is being built in North Charleston.
“You now have a governor who does not like to lose,” she told a crowd at an annual dinner for the ports, which was held the same day last month that the Corps of Engineers announced the approval for the Savannah dredging. “Georgia has had their way with us for way too long, and I don’t have the patience to let it happen anymore.”
On Thursday, another milestone in that transformative process will be reached when John Limroth receives the first-ever PhD in Automotive Engineering from Clemson's ICAR program, based in Greenville:
John Limroth of Austin, Texas, will graduate Dec. 17 with Clemson University’s first automotive-engineering Ph.D.
Clemson launched its automotive-engineering program in 2006 at the Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR) campus. Until fall 2009 it was the only automotive-engineering Ph.D. program in the United States listed in Peterson’s, a well-known guide to colleges and universities. The Clemson automotive-engineering program graduated nine master’s degree students in 2009. Limroth is the first to graduate with a Ph.D.
“We are very proud of John Limroth and this milestone for our automotive-engineering program,” said Tom Kurfess, Limroth’s adviser and professor and BMW Chair of Manufacturing in the mechanical engineering department at Clemson. “Our program is interdisciplinary and our students are from a wide variety of engineering and science backgrounds. They live, eat, sleep and breathe automotive engineering. We are a highly focused group that addresses systems engineering with a specific focus on the automobile. All of our courses use the automobile as our educational platform.”
Mr. Limroth has already begun work for Michelin. While he is one of the first ICAR graduates to go to work a South Carolina-based company, he won't be the last. The ability of ICAR to produce executive-track employees presents the long-term potential to make the Palmetto State even more attractive to the automotive industry.
This news should also give Clemson fans a little something to be proud of. In the wake of their recent thrashing by the Gamecocks, they could probably use some good news right about now.
Back in 2007, we talked about the importance of this program, and are pleased to see it bearing its first fruit. Dr. Limroth has our heart-felt congratulations for his accomplishment, and our appreciation for his part in helping South Carolina take another step forward in its efforts to be a competitive player in the global economy of the 21st Century.
But before his leaps into his new job, we hope he gets a couple of weeks off to enjoy some family time with his wife and kids - they've earned it.
- The refusal of labor unions to negotiate
- Boeing's management being "disloyal" to Seattle
- Cheap, lazy and inferior South Carolina labor
We're a little surprised he didn't throw in a burning cross and a KKK gnome while he was at it.
This cartoon embodies the sour grapes mindset which many on the left coast have taken towards Boeing's wise choice. In the interests of building a stronger relationship between Boeing management and South Carolina, the Blogland wouldn't mind if Seattle's circular firing squad keeps up the good work.
We invite our readers to email Mr. Horsey and ask him what he was thinking.
... or to tell him "... yeah, and the horse you rode in on".
Related topics: economic development , s.c. higher ed tour , scpolitics , south carolina politics
But our argument is about "right-sizing" our higher education system as much as it is about "down-sizing" because higher education can play a vital role in developing our state's workforce, which is key to an economic development approach which brings quality jobs to our state, which pay higher salaries and tend to stick around longer.
The lack of a public college or university in Greenville County has never made sense to us, and this need is partially met by the University Center initiative, which is similar to the Lowcountry Graduate Center. Both facilities use collaborative approaches which cut the education bureacracy while allowing for flexibility and innovation. Needless to say, hearing that major budget cuts are planned for the University Center didn't sit well with us:
Gov. Mark Sanford's proposed $5.8 billion state budget includes cuts of $301,000 in the University Center's recurring-funds allocation for the fiscal year beginning in July. Fred Baus, president and chief executive officer of the University Center, said that would put it "in the position of going from $2.25 million to $650,000" in operating funds.
"That is not viable," he said.
Without the University Center, which serves about 2,200 students a year, Greenville would be the only major metropolitan area in the state without a public institution of higher education, he said.
Ben Haskew, chief executive of the Greater Greenville Chamber of Commerce, said, "I think closing it would be catastrophic for Greenville. We are on a mission to improve per capita income and transition to a new economy. It's all about education."
Bruce Yandle, dean emeritus of the Clemson University College of Business and Behavioral Science, said the University Center has been important and will continue to be important to the Greenville area because of the students it educates and the businesses it helps attract to the Upstate.
Without the consortium of seven universities that make up the University Center, calls would increase for a public university in Greenville County, costing a minimum of $20 million, said former Lt. Gov. Nick Theodore, member and former chairman of the center's board of visitors.
We hope the final budget will allow for the resources needed to keep this center open and operational. It's certainly a lot cheaper than building a college for the area, as well as an economic development investment that adds value to the Upstate.
According to a new report out from the friendly folks at the S.C. Agribusiness Council and the S.C. Forestry Association, the state's agri-business sectors farming and forestry is responsible for nearly 200,000 of South Carolina's jobs, with a combined payroll in excess of $7 billion annually, doing well over $30 billion in business:
Farming and forestry constitute the leading economic cluster in South Carolina today, larger than manufacturing and tourism combined, according to a new study released by the S.C. Agribusiness Council and the S.C. Forestry Association.
The study was conducted during nine months by Harry Miley of Miley Gallo & Associates of Columbia. The research indicates that all commodities and services in modern agribusiness, taken together, make a $33.9 billion impact on the state’s economy, larger than any other sector.
As employment in other parts of the economy has declined, agribusiness is growing and now provides jobs for nearly 200,000 South Carolinians.
It also means that our state's Commissioner of Agriculture oversees the biggest chunk of South Carolina's economy, making Hugh Weathers a very important guy with a lot of economic power.
Which brings us to our Question of the Day: If Mark Hammond is South Carolina's Dirty Harry, does that make Hugh Weathers our state's Al Capone?
It is the second time the Moore School has done such a study. In 2002, the BMW impact was estimated to be about $4.1 billion, producing 16,691 jobs with wages and salaries of $691 million annually in South Carolina.
Since then, BMW has continued to expand its operations near Greer. Last March, BMW said it would invest an additional $750 million in its Spartanburg County factory to add 1.5 million square feet and 500 new jobs on site to produce three models and to increase production capacity to 240,000 units by 2012.
BMW latest investment would be the largest ever announced for the factory, increasing BMW investments in South Carolina to $4.2 billion, the company said.
Related topics: economic development , human resources , me , my life , workforce development
This will be a great opportunity to meet other people like myself who are involved in workforce development from communities across the United States. Among the many workshops and seminars that I'll be attending, keynote speakers will include:
- Daniel Pink, best-selling author and expert on innovation, competition and the changing world of work will speak at the Opening Session on Sunday morning.
- Newt Gingrich, author, speaker and architect of the "Contract With America" will present at Monday's Keynote Session.
- Gene B. Sperling, former National Economic Advisor to President Clinton, consultant and writer, will kick-off the closing session on Tuesday.
Looks for news and photos from the trip. I'll be leaving tomorrow.
Y'all be sure to have a great weekend!
Robinson's struggle is mirrored by nearly one out of every three people who call Orangeburg County home. An hour west of Charleston's mushrooming suburbs, the county of 90,000 is 10th in the nation for the percentage of people living in poverty, based on the latest U.S. Census figures for counties 65,000 and larger. Poverty is defined as a family of four having an income of $20,614 or less or individuals making $10,294 or less a year.
Compounding Orangeburg's struggle is a lack of an educated work force — only one out of 7 people have at least a bachelor's degree — and a soaring unemployment rate of 10 percent, a figure higher than Argentina's rate.
- Two members of County Council, including their last Chairman,
- the last Sheriff,
- a municipal Treasurer for Orangeburg, and
- a Police Chief and Town Clerk in Santee.
It can't be easy to recruit good-paying jobs to a county whose last County Council Chairman pled guilty to offering a no-bid opportunity to buy the county hospital.
All the federal pork money intended to "prime the pump" won't help a community that doesn't want to clean up it's act first, and who has a number of key public officials that are out for their own benefit, instead of that of their community. We shouldn't be surprised to find that public corruption and governmental incompetence is far more prevalent in many impoverished communities.
While there are many problems confronting poor rural areas like Orangeburg County, few of them can be addressed as easily as public corruption. Working to stomp out corruption and help make sure their public servants are looking to put public service ahead of personal enrichment is a good first step.
Taking that first step is, in part a responsibility of watchful state and federal officials, who have done an admirable and patient job weeding the county of its crooked officials. But it's also the responsibility of the people of the county, who largely give incumbents a free pass at the polls in one of the state's most one-party counties (which hasn't elected a Republican to any office since 1992).
While this is not to say one party has a monopoly on virtue (we know that's not the case), the lack of effective political competition, both inside and between political parties, isn't healthy for any community. In the case of Orangeburg County, the willingness of voters to accept the status quo been a recipe for disaster.
In "Michigan needs to look south", in the Detroit News, columnist Daniel Howes looks at how the Carolinas are working to partner higher education with cutting-edge manufacturing technology development, and in doing so, is leaving Detroit behind.
The business-and-political establishment of the Carolinas is doing what their counterparts in Michigan and here on Mackinac Island are only beginning to comprehend amid a gloomy fiscal outlook: Leveraging the power of higher education drives economic growth, attracts foreign and domestic investment and improves the caliber of would-be employees.
More about Clemson's ICAR facility:
Now, it's Clemson University in South Carolina -- not the University of Michigan -- that is home to the International Center for Automotive Research, a 200-acre campus that BMW AG built for $100 million and donated to Clemson.
CU-ICAR is a new model for economic development in South Carolina, matching Clemson's strengths in automotive research with the state's strong automotive economic cluster. CU-ICAR is a 250-acre "technopolis" where BMW, Michelin, Timken, Sun Microsystems and other corporate partners are joining with Clemson to focus on automotive and motorsports research and other transportation issues. The State of South Carolina is also a key partner, having created legislation to support economic development and innovation.
At Clemson's ICAR, the latest news includes Computational Center for Mobility Systems, featuring a high performance computing (HPC) system from Sun Microsystems which will allow the center to perform cutting-edge product development for the automotive, aerospace and shipping industries, as well as the soon-to-open Carroll A. Campbell Jr. Graduate Engineering Center, which will allow Clemson to grant the first Masters and Doctoral degrees in Automotive Engineering.
This is big news indeed, and a heck of an achievement for the academic, business and governmental team partners who made this vision a reality. Also one more good reason why we need to reassess the structure and missions of our state's higher and technical education systems, so Clemson and USC can focus more aggressively in these areas.
- Corruption SC: Looking at the corrupt, dishonest and inept
- Election 2012: Looking back at Election 2012
- Endorsements 2012: Here's who we supported and why
- Guest Op-eds: Here's what our readers are saying
- Crime and Courts: Judicial and law enforcement issues
- Interviews: Meet important S.C. politicos
- My Life: What's going on in my life and work
- Music: What rocks me - and what should rock you
- Recommended Reading: Good books to read, mostly on political communication
- South Carolina Politics: The latest news and views
- ▼ 2013 (116)
- ► 2012 (371)
- ► 2011 (345)
- ► 2010 (481)
- ► 2009 (319)
- ► 2008 (411)
- ► 2007 (345)
- ► 2006 (233)