Following two speeches and time for lunch, the Governor’s Job Summit continued on with a series of seven afternoon breakout sessions. As with the morning sessions, the afternoon sessions focused on vital economic issues.
Lieutenant Governor Yvonne Prettner Solon led a panel on infrastructure for the 21st century, where panelists talked about the need for expanded broadband access and continued investment in transportation infrastructure. Panelists and attendees agreed technology is key to make sure our state stays ahead of the curve and is equipped to handle all of its infrastructure projects more efficiently and intelligently.
Sessions on creative careers, workforce solutions, and employment inequality all offered great insights on the future shape of Minnesota’s workforce. With entrepreneurs, creative agencies, and freelancers increasingly making Minnesota home, the understanding of employment may need to expand beyond just jobs to fall under the broader concepts of work and income. The session on workforce solutions served as a forum to talk about how to educate our students earlier and with more clarity about their career options. The third session focused on the need to invest in less fortunate communities to close employment disparities.
Minnesota Department of Revenue Commissioner Myron Frans was joined by a panel of public officials, economists and business people, who talked about how the tax system can be made simpler, fairer, and more competitive.
And finally, exports were discussed as an incredibly important piece of Minnesota’s economic growth in the coming years, as much rapid business growth continues to come from outside of the United States.
Across all of these sessions, enthusiasm and passion were noticeable in the participation of the attendees and their engagement with panelists.